Expertise of the scientific community

in the Languedoc-Roussillon area (France)

Viticulture and Wine

Number 21
October 2016

AGROPOLIS

international
agriculture • food • biodiversity • environment
Agropolis International
brings together authorities of
research and higher education
in Montpellier and LanguedocRoussillon in partnership with
local communities, companies and
regional enterprises and in close
cooperation with international
institutions.
This scientific community has
one main objective–the economic
and social development of
Mediterranean and tropical regions.
Agropolis International
is an international space open
to all interested socioeconomic
development stakeholders in fields
associated with agriculture, food
production, biodiversity, environment
and rural societies.

Agropolis International is an international campus devoted to
agricultural and environmental sciences. There is significant potential
for scientific and technological expertise: more than 2,700 scientists
in over 75 research units in Montpellier and Languedoc-Roussillon,
including 400 scientists conducting research in 60 countries.
Agropolis International is structured around a broad range of research
themes corresponding to the overall scientific, technological and
economic issues of development:
• Agronomy, cultivated plants and cropping systems
• Animal production and health
• Biodiversity and aquatic ecosystems
• Biodiversity and land ecosystems
• Economics, societies and sustainable development
• Environmental technologies
• Food: nutritional and health concerns
• Genetic resources and integrative plant biology
• Grapevines and wine, regional specific supply chain
• Host-vector-parasite interactions and infectious diseases
• Modelling, spatial information, biostatistics
• Water: resources and management
Agropolis International promotes the capitalization and enhancement
of knowledge, personnel training and technology transfer. It is a hub for
visitors and international exchanges, while promoting initiatives based
on multilateral and collective expertise and contributing to the scientific
and technological knowledge needed for preparing development

Viticulture and Wine

policies.

2

This Dossier presents the scientific structures based in
Languedoc-Roussillon area, members of the Agropolis
International scientific community, whose activities are
focused on training, research and innovation regarding
viticulture and wine:
igher education and research institutions,
 h
development and incubation platforms
4 joint research units (UMRs, attached to several
 1
parent organizations) and research groups,
conducting studies in different complementary
scientific disciplines (genetics, physiology, agronomy,
ecology, oenology, economy, information science,
etc.)
 3joint technology units (UMTs), experimental units
and field stations, conducting studies in the field or in
technology centres for research units and public and
private partners.
This special issue showcases the broad range
of training, research and innovation expertise
of regional stakeholders in the fields
of viticulture and wine.
Scientifically, based on practical examples in five main
thematic areas:
nalysis of the diversity and functioning of the grape
 a
genome
ineyard management, agricultural practices, impact
 v
reduction
nowledge to control wine quality
 k
ocial science, innovation and sectoral
 s
transformation approaches
 m 
eeting digital challenges in the sector
and a cross-cutting chapter illustrating how—through
transdisciplinary programmes—climate change
adaptation and sustainable vitiviniculture challenges can
be addressed by combining these skills and expertise.
This Dossier also highlights the broad scope of
partnerships developed by regional scientific
stakeholders with the academic sector in France,
Europe and worldwide, and with the private sector to
support and facilitate top notch research and training,
so as to meet the needs of stakeholders in the sector,
and of consumers, while fostering innovation.
The range of diploma training-education courses
(2-5 years of higher education) offered by Agropolis
International member institutions in the viticulture and
wine sectors are also presented.

Viticulture and Wine
Foreword

4

Topics covered by the research

6

and training teams
Analysis of grape genetic diversity

9

and genome functioning
19

Vineyard management,
agricultural practices and impact reduction

29

Knowledge for controlling
wine quality

39

Social science, innovation
and sectoral transformation approaches

47

Meeting digital challenges
in the sector
Interdisciplinary programmes to address

57

challenges in the viticulture and wine sector
Adaptation to climate change

58

Sustainable vitiviniculture

62

Diversification of grapevine products

65

67

Partnerships and innovations
to support businesses
Training offered by Agropolis International

71

member institutions
Cover photo:

List of acronyms and abbreviations

74
Viticulture and Wine

Training, research and innovation
expertise on viticulture and
wine at the scientific research
platform in Montpellier and area

Cover photo: Vineyards in Languedoc-Roussillon (France) © F. Pruneau
The information presented in this Dossier is valid as of 01/09/2016.

3

Foreword

A

gricultural research and training conducted
in Montpellier (France) are tightly linked with
vine growing and winemaking. At the heart
of the large Languedoc wine-growing region, scientists
(researchers and teachers) have long been focusing on
issues related with this production, especially at times of
crisis or development opportunity. These scientists were
the first to identify phylloxera, the pest that devastated
vineyards in France in the late 19th century. They
subsequently proposed solutions against this scourge,
especially via grafting onto resistant American hybrid vine
plants, which ultimately saved European viticulture. Jules
Émile Planchon and Gustave Foex, respectively former
professors at the Faculté de Pharmacie (now the Université
de Montpellier) and the École Nationale d’Agriculture
(now Montpellier SupAgro), marked the history of
vitiviniculture through these successes. Agricultural
research and teaching were then mutually strengthened
for more than a century, while developing training areas
and scientific disciplines relevant to vineyard management,
winemaking and wine marketing.
This research was punctuated by a series of issues,
ranging from disease control, mechanization and
enhancement of yield and quality to winemaking and
market management. These issues now mainly concern
the environmental and socioeconomic sustainability of
vineyards, the tailoring of wines that meet consumer
expectations, in addition to reductions in pesticide use
and adaptations to climate change.

Viticulture and Wine

The platform set up in the sphere of Agropolis
International, and led mainly by the French National
Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA), Montpellier
SupAgro, Université de Montpellier (UM) and the National
Research Institute of Science and Technology for
Environment and Agriculture (IRSTEA), has mobilized
over 130 scientists on these issues. Local research/
development and experimentation stakeholders such as
the French Institute for Vine and Wine (IFV), the Institut
Coopératif du Vin (ICV Group), chambers of agriculture
and many start-ups—all closely associated—are also
involved. Agropolis International is thus now one of the
leading international research and training platforms
on viticulture and wine while clearly having substantial
potential for further progress.

4

Studies conducted by a dozen joint research units on
viticulture and wine are firmly underpinned by a full
spectrum of scientific disciplines: plant science, agronomy,
processing science, mathematics and social science. This
disciplinary support is essential for knowledge building on
scientific fronts and ensuring the consistency of targeted
research programmes for the sector. Research carried
out by teams working on viticulture and wine is geared
towards enhancing knowledge on the grape genome,
the response of vine plants to stress, the biogenesis of
compounds in grapes (for different grape crop uses),
soil erosion and input dynamics, yeast physiology or the
physicochemical characteristics of wines. Issues regarding
the organizational aspects of the sector, its regulation and
market functioning are also investigated. The continuum
of disciplines involved in the platform has also enabled
the development of integrated approaches to address
major challenges facing the sector. The expertise of the
teams is thus utilized in interdisciplinary programmes
focused on complex prospective issues, such as climate

change adaptation, grapevine dieback, the development
of sustainable cropping practices or the management of
alcohol and acidity levels in wines.
Management of these projects is facilitated by the
availability of resources and infrastructures of excellence,
especially a globally unique grapevine germplasm
collection that pools exceptional genetic resources, a
high-throughput plant phenotyping platform, a polyphenol
analysis platform, as well as a technology centre for
winemaking. These highly internationally appealing
features have led to unprecedented advances in research
programmes while supporting the international outreach
objectives of Agropolis.
Moreover, the Labex Agro Laboratory of Excellence,
coordinated by Agropolis Fondation, supports the
structuring, aspirations and scope of the scientific
community. It is focused on plant science and sustainable
agriculture.
The viticulture and wine research carried out is highly
receptive to concerns and involvement of the business
world, with many projects carried out within the
framework of partnerships with industry, technical
institutes, interprofessional stakeholders and other
organizations in the sector. Links with IFV have thus been
strengthened via three joint technolology units (GenoVine, QUALINNOV and ECHOTECH-VITI), which are
essential interfaces for the transfer or co-construction
of innovations for the sector. Moreover, the research
benefits from the Qualiméditerranée competitive cluster
and various services that facilitate their activities, such as
Agro-Valo Méditerranée for INRA and Montpellier SupAgro.
Viticulture and wine research of the platform has mainly
been developed in a cooperation setting through scientific
programmes at regional, national and international levels.
The teams are involved in several emblematic projects
and networks (LACCAVE and INNOVINE projects*,
FIDELE joint technology network***, etc.). They are
regularly incorporated in international research and
training networks with major centres in different winegrowing countries—University of California (Davis),
American Association of Wine Economists, Australian
Wine Research Institute, OENOVITI International, the
Groupe international d’experts en systèmes vitivinicoles
pour la Coopération, the European Master of Science
of Viticulture and Enology (EMaVE Consortium), the
Association universitaire internationale du vin (AUIV), etc.
A bibliometric analysis of recent publications (see figure
next page) highlighted the wealth of collaborations with
other research centres in France, especially with the
Bordeaux platform. These two platforms complement
each other, thus enhancing their international appeal,
through joint scientific initiatives, co-supervision of PhD
thesis candidates and co-certified international Master’s
candidates.
Education and training programmes for engineers,
oenologists, BSc, MSc and PhD candidates attract students
from around the world, who come to acquire advanced
knowledge and a business-friendly interdisciplinary and
international culture. In a setting of constant technical
progress and a highly specific regulatory framework,
the expertise of these graduates, engineers, researchers
and teachers is regularly tapped by institutions in the

This Agropolis International Dossier is designed to
enhance awareness on the wealth of training programmes
and the diverse range of research topics focused on in
the laboratories of the viticulture and wine platform
in Montpellier. The overall thrust is to improve the
structure and visibility of this platform. It aims to
showcase the initiatives under way to organizations in
the sector, businesses and local authorities, to facilitate
the development of links with other research and
training stakeholders of the national and international
scientific community and those involved in research and
development. It could thus be of interest to all sectoral
stakeholders and students for which it is targeted.
The Dossier is organized in eight main chapters. The
first four chapters address aspects related to grape
genetic diversity, cropping systems, oenology, sectors

and markets. The next two present the mathematics and
information science contributions, as well as integrated
approaches implemented around major issues (climate
change, sustainable viticulture and product diversification.
While the last two chapters deal with the organization of
partnership, innovation and training arrangements.
Bruno Blondin, Hervé Hannin,Thierry Simonneau,
Patrice This & Jean-Marc Touzard
* LACCAVE Project: Long-term adaptation
to climate change in viticulture and oenology.
** INNOVINE Project: Combining innovation
in vineyard management and genetics
for sustainable European viticulture.
*** FIDELE joint technology network:
fermented and distilled products.

ppPosition of the Agropolis International community (in red) among
the leading institutions publishing on viticulture and wine topics.

Partners with which Agropolis has co-published are shown in light pink. Network drawn
up with Gephi software, ForceAtlas2 spatialization algorithm, classified by the number of
publications (threshold: 100 publications, 5 co-publications)
© D. Fournier/INRA

Viticulture and Wine

viticulture and wine sector at regional, national and
international scales.

5

Topics covered
by the research teams
(September 2016)

R

esearch units and teams
mentioned in this Dossier
are listed in the following

chart.

1. Analysis of grape genetic diversity
and genome functioning
2. Vineyard management,
agricultural practices, impact
reduction
3. Knowledge for controlling wine
quality
4. Economics of innovation and of
the wine sector
5. Meeting digital challenges in the
sector

The ‘page’ column indicates
where the research unit or team
is presented. Red dots (•) indicate
the main topics focused on by the
unit or team, while black dots (•)
indicate secondary topics in which
they are also involved.

Viticulture and Wine

Research teams and units

6

UMR AGAP - Genetic Improvement and Adaptation of Mediterranean and Tropical Plants
(CIRAD/INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
Director: Patrice This, diragap@cirad.fr
Contact: Jean-Pierre Péros, peros@supagro.inra.fr
http://umr-agap.cirad.fr
UMR B&PMP - Biochemistry and Plant Molecular Physiology
(INRA/CNRS/Montpellier SupAgro/UM)
Director: Alain Gojon, alain.gojon@supagro.inra.fr
Contact: Isabelle Gaillard, isabelle.gaillard@supagro.inra.fr
www1.montpellier.inra.fr/ibip/bpmp
UMR CBGP - Centre for Biology and Management of Populations
(INRA/CIRAD/Montpellier SupAgro)
Director: Flavie Vanlerberghe, dircbgp@supagro.inra.fr
Contacts: Marie-Stéphane Tixier, marie-stephane.tixier@supagro.fr & Serge Kreiter, serge.kreiter@supagro.fr
www6.montpellier.inra.fr/cbgp
UMR Innovation - Innovation and Development in Agriculture and the Agrifoods Sector
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/CIRAD)
Director: Guy Faure, guy.faure@cirad.fr
Contact: Jean-Marc Touzard, touzard@supagro.inra.fr
http://umr-innovation.cirad.fr
UMR ISEM - Institute of Evolutionary Sciences of Montpellier
(UM/CNRS/EPHE/IRD)
Director: Agnès Mignot, agnes.mignot@univ-montp2.fr
Contacts: Laurent Bouby, laurent.bouby@univ-montp2.fr & Jean-Frédéric Terral, terral@univ-montp2.fr
www.isem.univ-montp2.fr
UMR ITAP - Information-Technologies-environmental Analysis-agricultural Processes
((IRSTEA/Montpellier SupAgro)
Director: Tewfik Sari, tewfik.sari@irstea.fr
Contact: Bruno Tisseyre, bruno.tisseyre@supagro.fr
http://itap.irstea.fr/
UMR LEPSE - Ecophysiology of Plants Under Environmental Stress
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
Director: Bertrand Muller, bertrand.muller@supagro.inra.fr
Contacts: Thierry Simonneau, thierry.simonneau@supagro.inra.fr & Eric Lebon, lebon@supagro.inra.fr
www6.montpellier.inra.fr/lepse/Presentation-generale
UMR LIRMM - Montpellier Laboratory of Informatics, Robotics and Microelectronics
(UM/CNRS)
Director: François Pierrot, information@lirmm.fr
Contact: Philippe Vismara, philippe.vismara@lirmm.fr
Coconut team: www.lirmm.fr/coconut

Page

1

10

13

2

27

40

16

51

4

5

48

22

3

UMR LISAH - Laboratory on Interactions between Soil, Agrosystems and Hydrosystems
(INRA/IRD/Montpellier SupAgro)
Director: Jérôme Molénat, jerome.molenat@supagro.inra.fr
Contacts: Jérôme Molénat, jerome.molenat@supagro.inra.fr & Olivier Grunberger, olivier.grunberger@ird.fr
www.umr-lisah.fr
UMR MISTEA - Mathematics, Informatics and Statistics for Environment and Agronomy
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
Director: Pascal Neveu, pascal.neveu@supagro.inra.fr
Contact: Bénédicte Fontez, benedicte.fontez@supagro.fr
www6.montpellier.inra.fr/mistea
UMR Moisa - Markets, Organizations, Institutions and Stakeholders Strategies
(CIRAD/INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/CIHEAM-IAMM)
Director: Paule Moustier, paule.moustier@cirad.fr
Contact: Étienne Montaigne, etienne.montaigne@supagro.fr
http://umr-moisa.cirad.fr
UMR Physiology and Experimental Medicine: Heart – Muscles
(UM, INSERM, CNRS)
Director: Jacques Mercier
Contact: Ariane Sultan, a-sultan@chu-montpellier.fr
http://u1046.edu.umontpellier.fr
UMR SPO - Sciences for Enology
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/UM)
Director and Contact: Jean-Marie Sablayrolles, sablayro@supagro.inra.fr
www6.montpellier.inra.fr/spo
UMR SYSTEM - Tropical and Mediterranean Cropping System Functioning and Management
(CIRAD/INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/CIHEAM-IAMM)
Director: Christian Gary, christian.gary@supagro.inra.fr
Contact: Raphaël Métral, raphael.metral@supagro.fr
http://umr-system.cirad.fr
UMT Ecotech-Viti
(IFV/IRSTEA/Montpellier SupAgro/IHEV)
Coordinators: Sébastien Codis, sebastien.codis@vignevin.com & Bernadette Ruelle, bernadette.ruelle@irstea.fr
http://itap.irstea.fr/?p=6696
UMT Géno-Vigne®
(IFV/INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
Coordinators and Contacts: Laurent Audeguin, laurent.audeguin@vignevin.com & Patrice This, this@supagro.inra.fr
ou patrice.this@cirad.fr
www.vignevin.com/linstitut/partenaires/unite-mixte-technologique.html
UMT Qualinnov
(IFV/INRA)
Coordinator and Contact: Rémi Guérin-Schneider, remi.schneider@vignevin.com
www.vignevin.com/linstitut/partenaires/unite-mixte-technologique.html
UEPR - Pech Rouge Experimental Unit
(INRA)
Director: Hernán Ojeda, ojeda@supagro.inra.fr
Contacts: Hernán Ojeda, ojeda@supagro.inra.fr & Jean-Michel Salmon, jmsalmon@supagro.inra.fr
www.montpellier.inra.fr/pechrouge
Domaine de Vassal Experimental Unit
(INRA)
Director: Hernán Ojeda, ojeda@supagro.inra.fr
Contact: Cécile Marchal, cecile.marchal@supagro.inra.fr
www1.montpellier.inra.fr/vassal
Domaine du Chapitre Experimental Unit
(Montpellier SupAgro/INRA)
Director and Contact Christophe Clipet, clipet@supagro.inra.fr
Wine Business Group
(Montpellier Business School)
Director: Beysül Aytac, b.aytac@montpellier-bs.com & Julien Granata, j.granata@montpellier-bs.com
Contact: Julien Granata, j.granata@montpellier-bs.com
www.montpellier-bs.com/groupe/le-centre-de-recherche/groupes-de-recherche/wine-business

Page

1

2

3

4

20

52

42

30

30

24

26

14


36

34

17

27

44

5


Viticulture and Wine

Research teams and units

7

Viticulture and Wine

© J.-M. Boursiquot/Montpellier SupAgro

8

Analysis of grape
genetic diversity
and genome functioning

Highly diversified genetic resources are essential to
address these challenges. In this respect, the Agropolis
International scientific community hosts the largest
grapevine genetic resource collection in the world
(Domaine de Vassal). With 7 800 accessions, this unique
treasure is preserved, characterized and may be
disseminated to the entire scientific community and the
vitiviniculture sector.
A better understanding of grapevine diversity and
genome functioning is also essential. Grapevine is the
fourth plant species whose genome was unravelled. A
homozygous variety was first sequenced by a FrancoItalian consortium, with the contribution of research
teams of the Montpellier scientific community. The highly
heterozygous Pinot noir variety was then sequenced by an
Italian team**.
Having the full sequence of bases that make up almost the
entire grapevine genome led—via automated analysis
—to the identification and positioning of most grapevine
genes. Major advances have been achieved using this
incredible tool, thus enhancing insight into certain traits of
agricultural interest, such as grape skin colour.
Gaining complete knowledge of all grapevine genes,
genome diversity and functioning is nevertheless still a
medium-term objective. Teams of the Montpellier scientific
community focused on viticulture and wine are thus
conducting studies to enhance the overall understanding of:
 grapevine genetic diversity, especially for adaptation and
quality traits, which requires access to high-throughput
phenotyping platforms
 the evolution of the main grapevine species cultivated
worldwide (Vitis vinifera), from its domestication
until present, especially through numerous natural
or controlled crosses that have led to current vine
varieties. Archaeobotanical studies are also carried out
to shed light on the earliest stages

 r elationships between Vitis vinifera and different related
species of the Vitis genus bearing favourable genes, such
as genes of resistance or tolerance to certain pests, but
which are also responsible for major defects, particularly
regarding organoleptic features.
This research will shed light on the history of grapevine
diversity from the origin of viticulture to today’s varieties,
but will also reveal ways to make better use of genetic
resources in breeding programmes.
Moreover, the identification of grapevine genome zones,
or even genes, involved in controlling crop yield and
quality traits will help to better orient potential crosses
to create tomorrow’s varieties, while helping breeders
accelerate vine breeding schemes so as to be more readily
responsive to professional requests.
Finally, a better understanding of the biosynthesis
pathways of the main primary and secondary compounds
of grapes and signalling pathways could explain the effects
of cropping practices on grapevine health and wine quality,
while revealing the impacts of climate change and different
biotic and abiotic stresses with regard to gene expression
and metabolic pathway regulation.
This chapter presents the research and technology units
of the Agropolis International community involved in these
topics. It also presents the Domaine de Vassal grapevine
repository and the phenotyping platform whose research
is focused on the drought response, while showcasing
several studies that are currently under way in these units.

Patrice This (UMR AGAP)
* Jaillon et al., 2007
** Velasco et al., 2007

Viticulture and Wine

I

n an ever-changing world, viticulture is facing
many challenges:
 climate change, with rising temperatures and/
or reduced rainfall, which have a direct impact
on wine quality
 changing consumer tastes, requiring modifications in the
wine product supply
 growing social concern on environmental issues, leading
to marked reductions in pesticide use
 the need for viticulture and wine product diversification,
especially to enhance the competitive edge on global
markets.

9

Analysis of grape
genetic diversity
and genome functioning

Grapevine breeding – from
genetic diversity to the
production of diseaseresistant grapevine varieties
adapted to changing
environmental conditions
Main teams
UMR AGAP
Genetic Improvement and Adaptation
of Mediterranean and Tropical Plants
(CIRAD/INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
250 scientists, with 14 involved in the topic
(Diversity, Adaptation and Breeding of Grapevine
research team)
UMR B&PMP
Biochemistry and Plant Molecular
Physiology
(INRA/CNRS/Montpellier SupAgro/UM)
80 scientists, with 8 involved in the topic
UMR ISEM
Institute of Evolutionary Sciences of
Montpellier
(UM/CNRS/EPHE/IRD)
166 scientists, with 8 involved in the topic
UMT Géno-Vigne®
Development of vine genetic resources
in France
(IFV/INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
23 scientists
Domaine de Vassal Experimental Unit
(INRA)
8 engineers and technicians
Other teams focused on this topic

Viticulture and Wine

UMR LEPSE
Ecophysiology of Plants Under
Environmental Stress
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
15 scientists, with 5 involved in the topic

10

UMR SPO
Sciences for Enology
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/UM)
45 scientists
Domaine du Chapitre Experimental Unit
(Montpellier SupAgro/INRA)
7 engineers and technicians

The adaptation of viticulture is
essential considering its high
environmental impact due to
pesticide use, the intimate link with
human societies through the terroir
concept, the frequent location of
vineyards around cities and the
potential risk of climate change
impacts on wine quality. A mediumterm solution is the dissemination
of new disease-resistant grapevine
varieties that are better adapted to
changing environmental conditions,
while maintaining a high level of
quality.
In this context, the Diversity,
Adaptation and Breeding of
Grapevine (DAAV) team of the joint
research unit Genetic Improvement
and Adaptation of Mediterranean
and Tropical Plants (UMR AGAP –
CIRAD, INRA, Montpellier SupAgro)
aims to breed more disease resistant
grapevine varieties that are better
adapted to climate change while
being of high quality. The unit focuses
on three lines of research:
 studies on the diversity and
evolution of grapevine and related
species
 identification of the genetic and
molecular basis of traits of interest
and adaptation
 integration of this information for
trait prediction and breeding of
innovative varieties.

This research is enhanced by
knowledge from various disciplines,
including ampelography, population
genetics, quantitative genetics,
physiology and phytopathology, as
well as methodological expertise
in areas such as molecular biology,
statistical modelling and algorithmics.
To ensure targeted research, the
research unit formed the joint
technology unit (UMT) Géno-Vigne®
(see p. 14) in partnership with the
French Institute for Vine and Wine
(IFV), thus enabling interaction with
professional stakeholders in the
sector.
The DAAV team is actively
participating in managing the world’s
largest grapevine genetic resources
collection at Domaine de Vassal (see
p. 17) and has various technical and
equipment resources (experimental
plots, greenhouses, growth rooms).
It also masters the dwarf grapevine
production technique. The team
has privileged access to a highthroughput genotyping platform and
bioinformatics servers of the UMR
AGAP South Green1 platform and of
the Génomique Info research unit
(URGI, INRA Versailles). Some of the
generated data are available online via
SNiPlay2, VitPhe3 and GnpIS.
1. The South Green platform was created to provide
access to innovative methods and bioinformatics
resources devoted to genomics and breeding of high
yielding and high quality plants: www.southgreen.fr
2. SNiPlay: an SNP polymorphism data analysis and
processing web application: http://sniplay.cirad.fr
3. VitPhe: an information system devoted to archiving,
consultation and processing of experimental data from
different projects and collected via different platforms
(field, greenhouse, laboratory) : http://bioweb.supagro.
inra.fr/vitphe/public

Gaining insight into the history of grapevine varieties through DNA
analysis
Molecular markers have been highly effective in studies on grapevine
varieties, especially in the 1990s with the use of microsatellite
markers, or simple sequence repeats (SSRs). These molecular tools
have generated knowledge on three topics related to the history
of grapevine varieties, i.e. their identification, genealogy, and the
geographical structure of their diversity.

of comparative morphological studies. The positioning of varieties in
these diversity groups at different scales has clarified their possible
geographical origins and historical pathways.
Contacts:
Thierry Lacombe, lacombe@supagro.inra.fr
Jean-Michel Boursiquot, jean-michel.boursiquot@supagro.fr

Varietal identification has benefitted substantially from the availability
of molecular markers to back conventional ampelographic
techniques. Many local, national and international studies have led
to the confirmation or discovery of synonymous and homonymous
varietal names, thus boosting insight into current and past ranges
of certain ‘traveller’ grapevine varieties. These synonyms are now
pooled in several online open access databases.
Genealogical studies began in 1993. Since then, several studies have
confirmed or refuted hybridization data supplied by breeders, but
more importantly they have revealed the pedigree of much older
traditional varieties. This is how the parents of famous varieties
—Chardonnay, Merlot, Syrah, etc.—were revealed. These results
highlighted certain major parents in the past but which are no
longer found in modern day vineyards (Gouais blanc, Magdeleine
noire des Charentes, Mondeuse blanche, etc.).
Diversity studies conducted at local, national or international scales
have clarified the geographical origin of grapevine varieties beyond
their direct genealogical origin. They led to the proposal of several
diversity groups, some of which had not been suspected on the basis

 Network representing half-kinship relationships revealed in 2 344
grapevine varieties in the Domaine de Vassal collection based on 20
microsatellite markers
Wine grape varieties are shown in blue, table grape varieties in yellow, and dual-purpose
varieties in green, while black lines symbolize kinship.
© T. Lacombe, J.-M. Boursiquot,V. Laucou, M. Di Vecchi-Stara, J.-P. Peros, P. This

t A microvine plant
(dwarf grapevine)
with inflorescences
at different
development stages
along the main
stem
© L. Torregrosa/UMR
AGAP, DAAV research
team.

With the aim of identifying genomic regions and if possible genes
involved in traits of interest, UMR AGAP conducts research in different
populations to find statistical associations between genotypic
variation of many markers distributed throughout the
genome (DNA polymorphism) and phenotypic variation in
traits measured on plants. These populations are derived from
isolated or interconnected crosses (with common parents, e.g. in
a diallel design), thus enabling comparison of results in different genetic
backgrounds. The research unit also uses samples of unrelated varieties to
more quickly and thoroughly investigate the available variability (association
genetics). Plants are grown in the field or in pots to facilitate studies on the
genetic bases of adaptation to water and heat stresses. In particular, studying
a short-cycle dwarf progeny (microvines, see photo) allowed the entire population
to be grown in a growth chamber under two different temperature regimes. New
genomic regions involved in variations in berry weight and acid concentration over
a broad temperature range were thus found. As many genes are present in these regions,
screening based on the expression and variability profiles of these genes is thus necessary.
When a gene is found to be a very likely candidate to explain the trait variability, functional
genomics can be used to try to validate its effects on the trait.
Contacts:
Agnès Doligez, agnes.doligez@supagro.inra.fr
Laurent Torregrosa, laurent.torregrosa@supagro. fr
Charles Romieu, charles.romieu@supagro.inra.fr

Viticulture and Wine

Identification of the genetic bases
of grapevine quality and adaptation

11

Phenotyping
platforms for
automated
analysis of drought
tolerance in large
plant populations
 LEPSE phenotyping platform

© T. Simonneau

The Montpellier Plant Phenotyping Platforms developed by LEPSE (see p. 22) enable comparison of hundreds of grapevine genotypes grown
in plant pots under drought conditions. This is one of the few facilities of this type in the world that features robotic control of soil drying
for individual plants (up to 1680) set on platforms in a greenhouse. Individual plant growth and transpiration are automatically analysed by
weighing of pots individually and by image analysis.
From 2012 to 2014, three experiments were conducted on a cross between two emblematic grapevine varieties in the South of France,
i.e. Syrah and Grenache. The results obtained in collaborations with UMR AGAP highlighted many genomic regions involved in growth
maintenance or in water conservation by plants under drought conditions. These findings could lead to the identification of grapevine
varieties best adapted to current or future climate scenarios or to marker-assisted selection of new varieties.
Contact:
Thierry Simonneau, thierry.simonneau@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/lepse_eng/Edito/Edito

Flavonoid biosynthesis in grapevine
Flavonoids are secondary metabolites essential for the quality
of plant-based foods and beneficial for health. They are used for
industrial applications, especially for their pigmentation, antioxidant
and nutritional properties.
Major flavonoids in grapes are:
 anthocyanins—pigmentation molecules in grapevine varieties and
red wine
 condensed tannins—involved in astringency and colour
stabilization.

Understanding these mechanisms could help gain further insight into
flavonoid compound synthesis by plants according to environmental
variations, and especially in relation to climate change (temperature,
light, drought). The genes could also serve as markers in future
breeding programmes.
Contact:
Nancy Terrier, terrier@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/spo_eng/Research/BCP2

Viticulture and Wine

The main stages of flavonoid biosynthesis in grapes, and more
generally in plants, are now known, but other steps are still
relatively undocumented. One of the aims of the Biosynthesis and
Composition in Polyphenols and Polysaccharides group of UMR SPO
(see p. 30) is to identify:
 molecular mechanisms involved in certain final phases of flavonoid
biosynthesis—especially methylation, acylation and polymerization,
which modify the properties of these molecules
 flavonoid transport and storage processes within cells
 factors controlling their content and composition in grapes.

12

New genes are being sought by the following combined approaches:
 metabolomic: analysis of the flavonoid composition in cultivar
tissues at different development stages
 transcriptomic: measurement of variations in gene expression
between samples having different flavonoid contents
 genetic (with UMR AGAP): identification of genome regions
controlling the flavonoid composition.
Several new genes have thus been identified. Characterization
of these genes revealed their role in the regulation of flavonoid
biosynthesis pathways, methylation and anthocyanin transport or
tannin acylation.

 Characterization of an anthocyanin methylation gene

From left to right:
1. Leaf extract without anthocyanins.
2. Leaf extract containing anthocyanins.
3. Leaf extract containing anthocyanins methylated through the activity of the studied
gene (anthocyanin methylation intensifies their colour).
© A. Ageorges/UMR SPO-INRA

Maintaining wine acidity
by controlling potassium
accumulation in grape berries
The joint research unit Biochemistry
and Plant Molecular Physiology
(UMR B&PMP – INRA, CNRS,
Montpellier SupAgro, UM)
studies mechanisms that govern
the hydromineral status of plants
under different abiotic conditions
by integrating research based on
studies carried out in disciplines
such as biochemistry, molecular and
cell biology, physiology, biophysics
and genetics. The unit is recognized
worldwide for studies on plant cell
transport activities (membrane
channels and transporters) that are
mainly focused on the Arabidopsis
plant model. The KaliPHruit team
of UMR B&PMP uses knowledge
acquired on K+ transport in the plant
model to analyse the accumulation
of this ion in grape berries and its
impact on fruit acidity.
In grapevine, grape potassium
contents have been constantly
increasing over the last 20 years in
relation to climate change. However,

when the grape K+ concentration
becomes excessive, this ion combines
with tartaric acid—a major organic
acid in grapes—to form highly
insoluble potassium bitartrate which
precipitates. There is a subsequent
increase in the malate/tartrate
ratio and pH in grapes, and hence
alkalinization of the must. This
phenomenon substantially alters
the grape and must quality because
the acidity releases aroma during
vinification. The wines obtained
then have low organoleptic qualities
and a low aging potential. Gaining
greater insight into the mechanisms
involved in K+ accumulation in grapes
during their development and under
abiotic stress should ultimately help
identify original and relevant markers
that could be used by geneticists in
breeding programmes.
UMR B&PMP has all the scientific
potential required for analysing
physiological and genetic
mechanisms involved in increased
K+ accumulation in grapes and
consequences in the decline of fruit
acidity. To enhance the effectiveness
of this study, the unit has established

close collaborations with the ETAP
team of UMR LEPSE (see. p. 22), which
has facilities for growing this species
under carefully controlled conditions,
and with the DAAV team of UMR
AGAP (see p. 10), whose mission
is to contribute to the creation of
new grapevine varieties that meet
sustainable viticulture challenges.

 Location of a K+ channel by in situ hybridization in
grape mesocarp (pulp cells)
Mes: mesocarp (grape pulp), Ph: phloem
© Isabelle Gaillard/BPMP and Teresa Cuéllar/CIRAD

Ratiometric fluorescent probes
for noninvasive measurement of
acidic pH in grape berries
The acidity of grapes at harvest is an essential factor for
obtaining good wine. Low-acidity grapes produce relatively
sweet and quite tannic alcoholic wines because it is the
acidity—also called ‘freshness’ in oenology—that releases
aromas and flavours from grapes. Moreover, global warming
increases the pH in grape vacuole cells.
As part of the ANR-funded SweetKaliGrape project (20152018), grape acidity during ripening will be analysed and
 Ratiometric probe formed by tandem fusion of two low pK fluorescent
correlated with potassium and sugar accumulation processes.
proteins.
Ratiometric fluorescent probes, expressed in grapes via genetic
This probe is effective for pH measurement in grape vacuoles during ripening.
engineering, will make it possible to noninvasively measure
© N. Paris/B&PMP
—contrary to proton microelectrodes—the pH by imaging at
cellular and subcellular scales (250 nm optimum resolution).
Current probes have a pK of around 6, so they cannot be used for measuring vacuole pH, especially in grapes since the pH may be under 3
in some varieties. The KalipHruit team of UMR B&PMP has thus developed a new generation of probes based on tandem fusion of low-pK
fluorescent proteins, i.e. a blue fluorescent protein fused by a few glycine residues to a red fluorescent protein. Fluorescence emissions of the
two proteins are recorded and the pH is deducted from the fluorescence ratio, which is precalibrated in vitro with a range of buffers.

Contact:
Nadine Paris, nadine.paris@supagro.inra.fr

Viticulture and Wine

The first two probes obtained were expressed in a bacterial system and analysed by spectrometry. They will subsequently be fused to
addressing signals so as to enable their accumulation in vacuoles and their expression in grapes. The pH will be measured via confocal
microscopy and by calculating the fluorescence ratio of the two proteins.

For further information: www1.montpellier.inra.fr/ibip/bpmp/english/teams/kaliphruit.htm

13

Analysis of grape genetic diversity and genome functioning

Effective use of grapevine
genetic resources in France
The joint technology unit GénoVigne® (UMT Géno-Vigne® – INRA,
Montpellier SupAgro, IFV) was
certified by the Directorate General
of Education and Research of the
French Ministry of Agriculture in
2008. Joint technology units (UMT)
provide an interface between research
and development and enable
joint management of nationallyoriented research and development
programmes. They associate a
qualified technical institute and
a public research institute or a
higher education establishment
in joint projects. The UMT GénoVigne® project thus associates the
IFV National Plant Material Pole,
UMR AGAP, Domaine de Vassal and
Domaine du Chapitre. The joint
research units (UMR) Ecophysiology
and Grape Functional Genomics
(INRA Bordeaux) and Grapevine
Health and Wine Quality (INRA
Colmar), the experimental unit (UE)
Pech Rouge and UMT QUALINNOV
are now associated with GénoVigne®.
UMT Géno-Vigne® aims to streamline
the management, conservation and
development of grapevine genetic
resources in France in favour of
the wine industry. It is geared

Viticulture and Wine

q View of the Domaine de l’Espiguette ® IFV

14

towards varietal innovation, from
characterizing grapevine genetic
resources, technology development
and transfer, conducting trials
on innovative plant material, to
obtaining new varieties that are
registered in the national catalogue.
The primary goals are:
T 
o enhance genetic resource
management and develop
alternative conservation methods
through an integrated action plan
for grapevine genetic resource
management at the national
level (UE Domaine de Vassal,
IFV and network partners), ISO
9001/2008 certification (which
specifies the quality management
system requirements), sanitary
characterization and sanitation
of genetic resources and markerassisted identification (varietal
identification and clonal
polymorphism).
T 
o improve sanitary and
phenotypic characterization
of genetic resources and make
effective use of available genetic
resources (varieties and clones):
genetic resource phenotyping and
development of high-throughput
phenotyping tools, testing of more
effective genotyping approaches,
assessment of methods for
identifying the genetic basis of
polymorphism.

wT 
o propose high performance
plant material to address the
need to reduce pesticide inputs
while coping with climate change:
development of elite parents
with oligogenic resistance* to
cryptogamic grapevine diseases
(downy mildew, powdery mildew)
and pre-breeding populations**,
definition of ideotypes*** for the
sector, breeding and molecular
marker-assisted selection so as to
link regional typicity and disease
resistance, assessment of fieldselected genotypes, development of
new clones, old or foreign varieties,
set up of multisite experiments,
innovation and innovative
management strategies.
xT 
o facilitate access to information
and knowledge by developing tools
to help in identifying grapevine
varieties and by supporting training
initiatives.
The unit benefits from its members’
infrastructures and resources
(experimental vineyards, laboratories,
collections, documentation centre,
greenhouses, vinification building,
equipment, etc.).
* Resistance determined by a small number of genes.
** Populations intended for later
use in breeding programmes.
*** New varieties selected for their capacity to make
optimal use of a given environment and fulfilling
approved specifications.

 Breeder removing all flowers from a grapevine flower cluster

© T. Flutre

Breeding downy and powdery mildew resistant grapevine varieties

Candidate varieties are selected in three stages, with a 5%
selection rate per stage. The first stage includes two steps
—selection using genetic markers (DNA sequences for
identifying individuals bearing certain sought-after traits)
and greenhouse selection (3-4 years, to obtain material for

propagation). The second stage includes the planting of 5-10 vine
plants in the field to be monitored with regard to viticultural
practices and to carry out microvinification tests (~6 years).
The last stage involves selection tests, with 90 vine plants and
controls at two sites, to collect data necessary for variety
cataloguing (~6 years).
Different grapevine breeding programmes are currently under
way in partnership with UMR Grapevine Health and Wine
Quality (INRA Colmar) to obtain downy and powdery mildew
resistant varieties with the aim of reducing pesticide treatments
for diverse production types (Champagne, Cognac, Bordeaux,
rosé wine, table grapes). Moreover, studies are being carried
out by UMT Géno-Vigne®, along with UMR AGAP, to reduce
the breeding time by using genetic markers spanning the entire
genome (i.e. ‘genomic selection’) to replace stage 2.
Contacts:
Loïc Le Cunff, loic.lecunff@vignevin.com
Laurent Audeguin, laurent.audeguin@vignevin.com
Timothée Flutre, timothee.flutre@supagro.inra.fr
Patrice This, patrice.this@supagro.inra.fr

Viticulture and Wine

One current major challenge in viticulture is to ensure
environment-friendly production in a climate change setting.
Grapevine breeding can help address this challenge based on
the professional expectations and available scientific knowledge.
Discussions are under way with professional wine producers
in different wine-growing areas to add criteria specific to their
region to these global challenges. This joint ‘ideotype definition’
step helps in choosing parent material and breeding criteria
prior to carrying out crosses. Each grape seed obtained will
then generate a single plant, but only a few selected ones will
ultimately match the defined ideotypes.

15

Analysis of grape genetic diversity and genome functioning
Origins and historical
biogeography of viticulture
The joint research unit Institute of
Evolutionary Sciences of Montpellier
(UMR ISEM – UM, CNRS, EPHE, IRD)
conducts research on the origins
and dynamics of biodiversity and
the conditions and mechanisms
involved in its evolution. This
research concerns both current
and past biodiversity and includes
a broad range of organisms and
environments. A combination of
field, experimental and theoretical
approaches are implemented.
The Biodiversity Dynamics and
Human Ecology team at ISEM

focuses on biological, ecological and
historical aspects of interactions
between organisms, communities
of organisms (mainly plants),
environmental parameters
(particularly soil and climate) and
human activities.

Research on the Mediterranean
Environment (OSU-OREME), for
several years the team has been
monitoring the demographic,
biological, ecological and sanitary
status of wild grapevine populations
in Languedoc-Roussillon (France).

The team conducts research on the
domestication and biogeographical
history of grapevine diversity from
the origin of viticulture based on
bioarcheologial archives and on
interactions between archeobotanical
tools, morphometry and genetics. As
part of the Observatory for Science
of the Universe–Observatory for

This research is supported by
federative research bodies (OSUOREME) and funding from national
(French National Research Agency,
[ANR], development aid, etc.)
and international programmes,
by platforms (archeobiology,
morphometry, etc.) and national and
international collaborations.

Archeobiology of grapevine
Roman origins of the Languedoc wine-growing region
The combination of archaeology, archeobotany and morphometric
methods can be used to investigate the palaeodiversity of cultivated
grapevine, while also placing it in its chronological, ecological,
biogeographical, technoeconomic and cultural context.
In recent years, preventive archaeology has revealed a high number
of Gallo-Roman wineries, thus helping to gain further insight into
the history and functioning of the first specialized viticulture in
Languedoc region (France). Due to the presence of wells, these sites
often deliver high quantities of perfectly preserved plant remains
(wood, seeds, leaves and other remains), which is direct evidence
of the environment and economy of these wineries. Grapevine is a
pivotal element in these records.
Morphometric methods are applied to assess archaeological grape
seeds and charcoal in order to characterize past diversity by direct
comparison with reference models established through the analysis
of current materials.

These studies, carried out by the Biodiversity Dynamics and
Human Ecology team of ISEM, have revealed the high diversity of
domestic grapevines grown in Roman wineries. They have shown
that morphologically wild grapevines were systematically harvested
alongside domestic types, which raises questions about the history
of the domestication, ecology, geographical distribution, evolution
and paleoagronomy of grapevine. The results of this research
contribute to the themes and expositions of the Jardin Antique
Méditerranéen (Balaruc-les-Bains, France)*.
* www.thau-agglo.fr/vivre/la-culture/jardin-antique-mediterraneen

Contacts:
Laurent Bouby, laurent.bouby@univ-montp2.fr
Jean-Frédéric Terral, terral@univ-montp2.fr

Viticulture
Viticulture and
and Wine
Wine

 Waterlogged grapevine (Vitis vinifera) twigs from a well at the
Roman site of Terrasses de Montfau at Magalas (Hérault, France)
(INRAP excavations, study I. Figueiral) © S. Ivorra/CNRS–ISEM

16

 Waterlogged grape (Vitis vinifera) seeds from a well at
the Roman site of Lesse (2nd-3rd c. AD) at Sauvian (Hérault,
France) (INRAP excavations, study I. Figueiral).
© S. Ivorra/CNRS–ISEM

u Cross-section of grapevine (Vitis vinifera) charcoal from a well
at the Roman site of Mont Ferrier (1st c. AD) at Tourbes (Hérault,
France) (INRAP excavations, study I. Figueiral)
© S. Ivorra/CNRS–ISEM

 An ampelographic collection plot at the Domaine de Vassal

© T. Lacombe

Vassal-Montpellier Grapevine Biological Resources Center
The ampelographic collection of the experimental unit (UE) of Domaine de Vassal (INRA), located at Marseillan-Plage (Hérault, France), is
devoted completely to the conservation, characterization and effective use of grapevine genetic resources.
This repository was founded in 1949 at the initiative of Jean Branas, who at the time was head of the Viticulture Chair at the École Nationale
d’Agriculture de Montpellier (now Montpellier SupAgro). It was initially based on the highly diversified ampelographic collections started by
Gustave Foëx as early as 1876 on the school site and gradually enlarged, especially by Louis Ravaz. After WWII, soilborne pest and disease
problems, in addition to threats of urbanization, necessitated the transfer of this collection to a site with better sanitary conditions and longterm sustainability.
The Vassal site, on the sandy coastal belt separating the Thau lagoon and the Mediterranean Sea, was chosen because the sand was free
of agents causing two serious grapevine diseases, i.e. the radicicolous form of phylloxera and the Xiphinema index nematode, vector of the
grapevine fanleaf virus. Grapevine can thus be grown there without rootstock.

Grapevines maintained in this repository undergo morphological, phenological, agronomic, technological, sanitary, genetic and bibliographical
characterization. The aim of these studies is to identify the varieties and fully assess their potential for meeting the expectations of scientists,
breeders, professionals in the wine production sector and the general public. This has given rise to a unique collection of documents,
including varietal files (over 5 000), herbaria (14 000 files), a specialized library, a photo library (50 000 photos) and an accessible online
electronic database.
Contacts:
Thierry Lacombe, thierry.lacombe@supagro.inra.fr
Jean-Michel Boursiquot, Jean-Michel.boursiquot@supagro.fr
Cécile Marchal, cecile.marchal@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/vassal_eng

Viticulture and Wine

Over the past 140 years, this collection has been continuously enhanced by donations (old local collections, wine growers, nursery owners,
non-professional enthusiasts, etc.) and through various collection surveys conducted in France with regional partners and abroad by scientists
or research institutes. Paul Truel (Director, 1954-1985) was highly instrumental in the acquisition, description and accurate identification
of many grapevine varieties. The repository currently hosts more than 7 800 grapevine accessions from 54 wine-producing countries,
representing 2 700 grapevine varieties, 350 wild grapevine varieties, 1 100 interspecific hybrids, 400 rootstock varieties and 60 Vitaceae
species. This is a unique grapevine collection in the world because of its richness and diversity.

17

u Mechanical weeding
under grapevines to avoid
herbicide applications

Viticulture and Wine

Here barley is also sown in the
interrows to control the vegetative
vigour. © Y. Bouisson

18

Vineyard management,
agricultural practices
and impact reduction

With this outlook of adjusting vineyard and vineyard
landscape management strategies to address a
spectrum of agroecological issues, several research
units of the Agropolis scientific community analyse
grapevine functioning and interactions with the physical,
physicochemical and biotic environment. The scale of
this broad scope research ranges from individual plants,
plots and farms to vineyard landscapes. The mechanisms
that determine plant water consumption, plant cover
evapotranspiration and, more broadly, water circulation
in vineyard landscapes in relation to the soil moisture
properties, are currently major scientific concerns.
Production stability on a multiyear scale is also the focus
of studies aimed at gaining further insight into the direct
and indirect effects of years of exceptional climatic
conditions with regard to both crop yield and quality.
Moreover, biocontrol methods are being explored to
meet national pesticide reduction objectives (Ecophyto
Plan). This includes boosting knowledge on the behaviour
of pests and beneficial organisms that are effective in
vineyards, as well as investigating technological options
such as improving spraying techniques and agricultural
options in relation to tillage or growing cover crops
that consume little or no pesticides. In addition, it is
necessary to develop agroenvironmental assessment
methods and tools (at the plot and landscape scale),
innovative agricultural practices to control crop yields,
pest regulation, and optimal use of soil water and nitrogen
resources.

The research teams have developed several systems
for long-term in situ observation of practices
and environments (Observatoire Méditerranéen de
l’Environnement Rural et de l’Eau), remote-sensing data
collection (spatialization of vineyard evapotranspiration)
and the analysis of specific agricultural practices in
platforms (Low Input Vineyard Experimentation [LIVE])
and experimental estates (Domaine du Chapitre, UE Pech
Rouge). All of these systems enable the collection of
large datasets on agricultural practices, physiological
conditions in vineyards and biophysical features of
the plant environment (soil, surface and ground water,
atmosphere, microfauna). Modelling is another scientific
tool used to understand and predict vineyard functioning
at different scales, from the plant (INNOVINE project),
to the plot (FertilCrop project) and the overall vineyard
landscape (Phyt’Eau Mod project). The models also
provide a basis for the development of support tools
(Phyt’Eau Mod and PURE projects) aimed at assessing
vineyard management from agricultural and environmental
standpoints. The overall approach—combining
experimentation, observation and modelling—is especially
valuable for assessing interactions between different
components of complex vineyard systems in their biotic
and abiotic environment. Several research projects
presented in this chapter are carried out in partnership
with interprofessional viticulture stakeholders, farm
advisory firms, agricultural input manufacturers and local
authorities.
Jérôme Molénat (UMR LISAH)
& Thierry Simonneau (UMR LEPSE)

Viticulture and Wine

I

n a setting in which vineyard replanting is
relatively slow and highly regulated, the adoption
of new vineyard management strategies can be
effective in addressing current socioeconomic
and environmental challenges. Some crop management
practices in use or under development can help mitigate
the negative impacts of climate change or pest pressure
on vine production. For instance, grape bunch heating can
be reduced by using tailored trellising methods. The biotic
environment may be modified by introducing beneficial
insects to prey on grapevine pest insects thereby reducing
pesticide use. Other strategic management options
implemented on a wine-growing region scale are effective
in controlling soil erosion and pollutant flows.

19

Vineyard management,
agricultural practices
and impact reduction
Engineering of cultivated
and developed landscapes
for sustainable water
and soil management
Main teams
UMR LEPSE
Ecophysiology of Plants Under
Environmental Stress
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
15 scientists, with 5 involved in the topic
UMR LISAH
Laboratory on Interactions between Soil,
Agrosystems and Hydrosystems
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
23 scientists, with 16 involved in the topic
UMR System
Tropical and Mediterranean Cropping
System Functioning and Management
(CIRAD/INRA/Montpellier
SupAgro/CIHEAM-IAMM)
20 scientists, with 7 involved in the topic
UMT Ecotech-Viti
(IFV/IRSTEA/Montpellier SupAgro/IHEV)
6 scientists
Domaine du Chapitre
Experimental Unit
(Montpellier SupAgro/INRA)
7 engineers and technicians
Other teams focused on this topic
Pech Rouge Experimental Unit
(INRA)
6 scientists, 30 engineers and technicians

Viticulture and Wine

UMR Innovation
Innovation and Development in Agriculture and the Agrifoods Sector
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/CIRAD)
50 scientists, with 4 involved in the topic

20

UMR CBGP
Centre for Biology and Management
of Populations
(INRA/CIRAD/Montpellier SupAgro)
52 scientists, with 2 involved in the topic

The scientific aims of the Laboratory
on Interactions between Soil,
Agrosystems and Hydrosystems
(UMR LISAH – INRA, IRD,
Montpellier SupAgro) are to:
 develop knowledge on mass
transfers and pollutant dynamics
in soils and catchments relative
to their natural or anthropogenic
spatiotemporal organization
 develop tools for the assessment
and prevention of risks caused
by human activities in cultivated
environments affecting hydrological
regimes and the evolution of water
and soil resources
 contribute to developing new
sustainable cultivated landscape
management methods.
The laboratory also trains students
on concepts and tools concerning
the analysis and modelling of the
spatial organization and hydrology of
cultivated environments.
Vineyard agrosystems are a specific
focus of LISAH research because
of the environmental management
issues (water, soil) involved, and
the fact that these agrosystems can
serve to cope with pressing scientific
questions, concerning:
 relationships between agricultural
practices—especially regarding soil
maintenance (green cover, chemical
or mechanical weeding, etc.)—and
the genesis of runoff and infiltration
 evapotranspiration functioning
of heterogeneous perennial plant
covers at different scales, from the
agricultural plot to the landscape
 factors determining soil erosion
 spatialization of natural (soil) and
anthropogenic (field patterns,
agricultural practices, irrigation
systems) properties of cultivated
landscapes.

This research aims to contribute to the
engineering of cultivated landscapes
in order to enhance sustainable
water and soil resource management.
In a global change setting (climate
variations, new agricultural and food
needs, etc.), this involves proposing
cultivated landscape management
strategies by streamlining the
spatial organization of agricultural
activities (land use, crop rotations,
soil maintenance practices, crop
treatments, etc.), as well as irrigation
schemes (ditch networks, hillside
catchments, embankments, etc.).
LISAH manages the Observatoire
Méditerranéen de l’Environnement
Rural et de l’Eau (OMERE, see
next page), which consists of two
catchments, including the Roujan
viticulture catchment in Hérault
department (France). Moreover,
the laboratory is developing the
OpenFLUID software platform for
simulation of fluxes in landscapes.
LISAH develops partnerships with
national and international scientific
teams, especially in North Africa
(Tunisia, Morocco), as well as with
public (French National Agency for
Water and Aquatic Environments,
French Agency for Food,
Environmental and Occupational
Health and Safety, etc.) and private
(consulting firms) socioeconomic
stakeholders.

Observatoire Méditerranéen de l’Environnement Rural et de l’Eau

ppAn overview of the Roujan experimental catchment

ppSystem for measuring
water and rainfall flows
and quality at the outlet
of the site
© O. Huttel/INRA

© C. Slagmulder/INRA

OMERE is an environmental research
observatory devoted to gaining insight
into and assessing the effects of climate
change and of changes in agricultural
practices and land use on water and
soil dynamics at the Mediterranean
agricultural landscape scale. The
observatory specifically aims to:
u understand the impact of agricultural
activities on mass fluxes in
Mediterranean elementary catchments
(hydrological regimes and balances,
water resource allocation, erosion
dynamics, water quality variations)
v assess the intensities and rates of
quantitative and qualitative changes in
water and soil resources according to
land-use changes
w support the development of
approaches for modelling fluxes in
cultivated environments by closely
associating field observations and
modelling data
x provide scientific bases, references
and assessment tools for
agroenvironmental engineering of
cultivated landscapes.

The observatory consists of two sites—a catchment in Tunisia,
monitored since 1994, and a viticulture catchment in Hérault
department, France (Roujan municipality), monitored since 1992.
In the latter catchment, relationships between the main soil
maintenance practices in vineyards (green cover, mechanical tillage,
chemical tillage) and the genesis of runoff and infiltration are studied,
along with the factors that determine soil erosion in vineyard
soils and of grapevine evapotranspiration as a function of the soil
water status. The observatory also contributes to the study of soil
spatialization, landscape features of hydrological interest (ditches,
embankments, etc.) and agricultural practices.
The observatory includes systems for measuring hydrological,
meteorological, hydrochemical and erosion factors from plot to
catchment scales. Agronomic observations and measurements are
also obtained. The observatory is co-managed by UMR LISAH
and HydroSciences Montpellier, as well as by the Institut National
Agronomique de Tunis and the Tunisian Institut National de Recherche en
Génie Rural, Eau et Forêts.
Contacts:
Jérôme Molénat, jerome.molenat@supagro.inra.fr
Damien Raclot, damien.raclot@ird.fr
For further information: www.obs-omere.org

Phyt’eau BV Mod project – assessment of pesticide
pollution of water in vineyards

Based on experimental and modelling research carried out by UMR LISAH on water contamination by pesticides in viticulture catchments,
the Phyt’eau BV Mod* research and development project was carried out by the unit in partnership with the Envilys engineering consultant
firm and the Eurofins analytical laboratory. The aim
was to develop an integrated modelling tool combined
with field measurement instruments to assess pesticide
treatment practices and their surface water resource
contamination impacts. The tool was developed on
the basis of the MHYDAS hydrological model and the
OpenFLUID landscape simulation platform, which were
both developed by LISAH researchers. The project was
applied to environmentally assess viticulture catchments
in Languedoc-Roussillon region (France) and resulted
in a service offer called the Observatoire des Pollutions
diffuses (nonpoint source pollution observatory), which
was awarded the Hydro Innovation second prize at the
HydroGaïa International Water Exhibition in 2011.
* Integrated diagnostic and decision-support tool for nonpoint source
pollution by crop protection products.

© INRA-Envilys

Contact:
Marc Voltz, marc.voltz@supagro.inra.fr

Viticulture and Wine

Grapevine cropping is a pesticide-intensive activity, accounting for around 15% of agricultural pesticide consumption in France whereas this
crop represents less than 5% of the utilized agricultural area. Pesticide pollution of water in wine-growing regions is therefore often high and
the cause of degradation of numerous water resources.

21

 The grapevine plant preparation platform, located on the
Montpellier SupAgro campus, where potted plants are conditioned
according to experimental requirements.

Grapevine tolerance to
drought, high temperatures
and low inputs

Viticulture and Wine

To address the negative impacts of
climate change on crop production,
the joint research unit Ecophysiology
of Plants Under Environmental
Stress (UMR LEPSE – INRA,
Montpellier SupAgro) conducts
research to find tolerant varieties and
crop management strategies adapted
to maintaining sufficient production
under hot dry climatic conditions.

22

The Plant Transpiration Efficiency
and Adaptation to Dry Climatic
Conditions team focuses research on
grapevine with the aim of enhancing
vineyard tolerance to drought, high
temperatures and, more recently, low
inputs (especially nitrogen). Studies
are conducted with geneticists to
breed tolerant grapevine varieties,
with agronomists to propose new
crop management strategies, and
with molecular biologists to identify
physiological processes that could
have a key role in tolerance to the
studied constraints.

LEPSE technicians prepare several thousands of pots yearly for phenotyping experiments,
e.g. on the effects of nitrogen fertilization, growth, genetic variability in responses to
water deficits, etc.
© G. Bouteillier

Plant tolerance to climatic constraints
and input reductions is assessed in
detail at the leaf scale through the
analysis and modelling of growth,
water consumption, water status
and photosynthetic activity. At the
whole plant scale, tools for the
characterization and reconstruction
of the spatial structure of grapevine
are developed (by digitization, image
analysis and modelling) for different
varieties, as well as pruning and
trellising systems. These tools can
be used to assess the impacts of vine
training options on the microclimate
around the plants and on their growth
and development. It is thus possible
to classify management strategies and
varieties according to their impacts
on the light interception and water
use efficiency (quantity of water
necessary for a given yield), on fruit
microclimate (sunlight exposure and
temperature) and berry composition.
The experiments are carried
out under controlled conditions
(greenhouses and laboratory
growth chambers) and in vineyards

(experimental unit plots or partner
producers). The laboratory also
develops unique phenotyping
platforms (see p.12), which enable
the comparison of high numbers of
different varieties/rootstocks (up to
1 600 plants simultaneously) under
controlled climate conditions.
These studies are supported by joint
projects with local (UMR AGAP, SPO,
SYSTEM and Innovation), national
(UMR Écophysiologie et Génomique
Fonctionnelle de la Vigne, Bordeaux)
and foreign (University of the Balearic
Islands and of Lisbon, Geisenheim
Research Center [Germany], National
Agricultural Technology Institute
[Argentina]) partners. Research
with UMR AGAP is at the forefront
of genetic progress, while that with
UMR SYSTEM is geared towards
streamlining vineyard management.

Mapping vineyard evapotranspiration on a regional scale
UMR LISAH developed a simple
vineyard evapotranspiration
mapping method based on satellite
images. The study focused on the
lower Peyne river valley, a tributary
of the Hérault river, where vines
are grown on over 70% of the
area. Twelve ASTER images were
acquired between July 2007 and
October 2008. These surface
temperature images (90 m spatial
resolution) were converted into
daily evapotranspiration maps
using WDI* and S‑SEBI** indices,
which had yet to be used for
vineyard mapping. Measurement
devices were installed on seven
vineyard plots representative of
the soil-landscape variability in
the Peyne river valley in order to
validate these evapotranspiration
p Evapotranspiration maps. Direct evapotranspiration
measurement device set up in the measurements—using the eddy
Roujan catchment covariance technique—were
© L. Prévot/UMR LISAH obtained on two of these plots.

Moreover, regular monitoring of soil moisture and groundwater
levels enabled accurate daily evapotranspiration assessments on
the seven plots via the HYDRUS‑1D water flow, heat and solute
transport model***.
The satellite image-based evapotranspiration maps were successfully
validated, with the S-SEBI index** being slightly more precise
(0.8 mm/day) than the WDI index* (1.0 mm/day). Moreover, the
evapotranspiration maps obtained had a temporally stable spatial
structure, similar to that of the 1:25000 soil map. Besides using
these evapotranspiration maps for estimating grapevine water needs,
e.g. for irrigation, this work could be extended to encompass spatial
management of viticulture practices (e.g. the green cover potential).
The information generated could then potentially be used for
mapping soil hydrodynamic properties.
* WDI: water deficit index, Moran et al., 1994
** S-SEBI: simplified surface energy balance index, Roerink et al., 2000
*** Simunek et al., 2005

Contacts:
Frédéric Jacob, frederic.jacob@ird.fr
Philippe Lagacherie, philippe.lagacherie@supagro.inra.fr
Laurent Prévot, laurent.prevot@supagro.inra.fr

Modelling to assess the performance of grapevine
training systems

Contact:
Éric Lebon, lebon@supagro.inra.fr
u Fig. 1 Examples of
the reconstruction
of 3D models of free
cordon (a,b) and
Lyre (c,d) types of
vine training systems
© INRA/LEPSE

p Fig. 3 Mobile greenhouse for grapevine climatological analysis
INRA scientists prepare the mobile greenhouse for measuring the physiological responses
of grapevines (transpiration, growth) to certain controlled climatological parameters
(CO2, temperature).
© psaila.net

u Fig. 2 Relationship
between transpiration
efficiency (net assimilation/
transpiration) simulated
at the cover scale and
the proportion of foliage
exposed to direct sunlight
for four vine training
systems
Each point corresponds
to an individual plant placed in a
virtual scene.
From Prieto et al., 2013

Viticulture and Wine

The comparison of pruning and training with regard to tall perennial
plants like grapevines is problematic due to: (1) the high interannual
climatic variability, and (2) the difficulty in gaining access to the systems
where many different strategies would have to be studied (at least 50
pruning and trellising methods have been documented in vineyards).
A 3D plant functioning modelling approach was thus implemented by
LEPSE to simulate performances according to many potential pruning
and trellising choices. The developed model predicts the microclimate
of each leaf (especially the radiation it received and its temperature)
and impacts on photosynthesis and transpiration (see figure 1). Several
trellising methods can thus be classified on the basis of their transpiration
efficiency (i.e. quantity of water necessary for a given growth (see figure 2).
This simulation approach was validated by comparing values simulated by
the model with measurements obtained on whole plants in the vineyard
within a chamber where the transpiration and net photosynthesis of
the whole plant were recorded (see figure 3). This study involved a
collaboration with the National Agricultural Technology Institute at
Mendoza in Argentina (INTA) and is continuing with new applications
geared towards water savings and mitigating the negative effects of global
warming.

23

Vineyard management, agricultural practices and impact reduction

Ecological intensification of
viticulture
The joint research unit Tropical and
Mediterranean Cropping System
Functioning and Management (UMR
SYSTEM – CIRAD, INRA, Montpellier
SupAgro, CIHEAM-IAMM) conducts
research on multispecies cropping
systems. Agroforestry and viticulture
in Mediterranean and tropical areas
are the main models studied. The
unit explores the hypothesis that
the diversity of species grown in the
same area and the control of their
interactions promote ecological
intensification. It generates
knowledge and tools to assess
and design cropping systems that
combine economic performance and
the production of environmental
services.
Ecological intensification of
viticulture involves identifying
cropping systems that represent
a good trade-off between the
production and quality of grapevine
products on the one hand, and low
environmental and sanitary impacts

on the other. UMR SYSTEM focuses
research especially on the leeway
offered by soil maintenance without
herbicide treatments and based
on green cover (partial or total,
sown or spontaneous), sometimes
combined with targeted irrigation
and fertilization. Through the soil
water and nitrogen balance, green
cover impacts crop yield build-up
and grapevine quality, as well as the
exposure of plants to fungal diseases
resulting from their vegetative growth.
UMR SYSTEM develops indicators
and modelling tools for preliminary
investigation of trade-offs between
yield management and pest control.
Developing viticulture production
methods that are less dependent on
pesticides requires tools to assess
the crop production potential under
the prevailing conditions regarding
soil water and nitrogen resources
and crop losses due to uncontrolled
pest infestations. The research unit
is involved—in partnership with
IFV—in the coordination of EcoViti,
a regional and national network that
pools six experimental platforms

Viticulture and Wine

q Soil profile in a viticulture plot (Domaine du Chapitre)

24

© UMR SYSTEM

devoted to innovative, participativelydesigned viticulture systems with
low pesticide inputs. This is carried
out in the framework of the French
Ecophyto plan, which requires a
significant reduction (-50%) in the
use of pesticides in agriculture.
UMR SYSTEM also studies—in
networks of winegrower’s plots
—factors involved in the evolution
of biological, environmental and
technical components of cropping
systems undergoing a transition to
organic farming.
Since 2002, the unit has been
managing the Low Input Vineyard
Experimentation (LIVE) research
platform at the Domaine du Chapitre
(see p. 27). It supports different
national and European projects
(e.g. PURE and FertilCrop projects;
see p. 64) and hosts a team of six
researchers, engineers and teacherresearchers, and three technicians.

 Ripe grapes (cv Mourvèdre) in a trial of a low-input viticulture system at the Domaine du Chapitre

© Y. Bouisson/UMR SYSTEM

Reducing pesticide use through integrated pest management in vineyards
The European PURE project* (FP7, 2011-2015) brought together
24 partners from 10 countries to develop IPM strategies so as
to reduce pesticide dependence in the main plant production
sectors. The aim was to help these sectors comply with European
regulations in order to reduce their impacts on human health and
the environment, while continuing to quantitatively and qualitatively
maintain a satisfactory level of food production.
UMR SYSTEM contributed to activities devoted to viticulture and
especially to the assessment of low-input wine-growing systems. Two
avenues were investigated: (1) the use of decision-support tools to
reduce the number of pesticide treatments and dosages, and (2) the
systematic use of biocontrol products.
The multicriteria DEXiPM analysis tool was adapted to grapevine
to assess the sustainability of innovative IPM strategies that were
developed and tested by the project partners. This tool divides the

environmental, economic and social dimensions of sustainability
into criteria and sub-criteria so as to aggregate a set of assessment
indicators by weighting in a ‘decision tree’. These qualitative
indicators were formulated to be more readily adopted in the field.
The results showed that the biocontrol strategy is more effective
from an environmental standpoint, but is less so from an economic
standpoint and the use of decision support tools offers the best
trade-off between economic and environmental performance and
acceptance by wine-growers.
* The Innovative Crop Protection for Sustainable Agriculture project
(FP7, the EU 7th framework programme)

Contact:
Raphaël Métral, raphael.metral@supagro.fr
For further information: www.pure-ipm.eu

Modelling crop losses due to grapevine pests and diseases

At the Domaine du Chapitre, experimental data were collected over three crop seasons (2013-2015) on the dynamics of the main grapevine
pests and diseases—mildew, powdery mildew, botrytis rot and grape berry moth—and on crop yields and components. Two viticulture
systems of the EcoViti programme were thus tested in a cv Grenache vineyard plot, i.e. Innobio (prophylaxis by desuckering, leaf thinning,
etc.) and IPM -50 (no toxic chemicals applied). A trial on the capacity of grapevine plants to offset early losses caused by diseases or pests at
the beginning of the season was also conducted in Montpellier in parallel with tests on experimental plots in the Bordeaux region.
These data will be correlated with those acquired previously by UMR SAVE in the Bordeaux region and used to develop and configure a
model to link viticulture production situations (climate and biotic stress level) with crop loss. This model should ultimately help prioritize
problems associated with pests and diseases.
Contact:
Nathalie Smits, smits@supagro.inra.fr

Viticulture and Wine

The DAMAGE key action of the Sustainable Management of Crop Health (SMaCH) metaprogramme of the National Institute for Agricultural
Research (INRA) includes research projects on harvest loss due to pests and diseases in different crops (grapevine, coffee and fruit crops).
UMR SYSTEM, in collaboration with the UMR Vine Health and Agroecology (SAVE, INRA Bordeaux), coordinates the project focused on
grapevine.

25

Vineyard management, agricultural practices and impact reduction

Reducing vineyard
dependence on pesticides

(operational monitoring sensors,
vegetation measurement probes,
etc.) to help farmers secure their
applications
 development of training (initial and
continuing) and communication
initiatives regarding innovative
spraying technologies for crop
protection products.

The French Agriculture Ministry’s
Ecophyto plan aims to reduce
pesticide use by 50% in France by
2025. The research and development
carried out since 2013 by the joint
technology unit (UMT) ECHOTECHVITI (IFV, IRSTEA, Montpellier
SupAgro) is thus aiming to develop
sustainable viticulture systems by
reducing vineyard dependence on
pesticides while maintaining their
competitiveness. Studies are focused
on the following topics:
 development of decision-support
tools for conventional and
organic viticulture to optimize
phytosanitary input use
 assessment of the agroenvironmental
performance of spraying
technologies to promote the
purchase of efficient sprayers and
the adoption of optimized practices
 contribution to the development
and use of innovative technologies

q Sprayers with collection-retrieval panels

The UMT brings together researchers,
engineers and technicians
specialized in the viticulture field,
agricultural equipment and sensors
to achieve this work. Initiatives are
carried out in close collaboration
with equipment manufacturers
(sprayers, nozzles and sensors),
agricultural equipment technicians
from chambers of agriculture and
professional agricultural operators.
This structuring project involving
research, development and education
stakeholders thus enables the
development and rapid transfer of
research results.

Under this UMT, a new tool—the
EvaSprayViti artificial vineyard (see p.
64)—was developed to reproducibly
characterize the agroenvironmental
performance of vineyard sprayers
and spraying practices using them.
The first results of studies carried
out with this tool confirmed that
spraying optimization and precision
spraying are very important levers
to reduce pesticide use. Substantial
differences in performance have been
recorded depending on the type of
material used and usage practices.
Moreover, a marked and safe
reduction in pesticide use requires
a global approach at the crossroads
between research in the fields of
technology (agricultural equipment,
sensors, ICTs), agronomy (breeding,
epidemiology, cropping systems),
economy and sociology (innovation
appropriation).

© IFV

Viticulture and Wine

p IRSTEA site, Montpellier centre

26

© C. Fatou

Impact of biodiversity management in vineyards on Phytoseiidae
predatory mite communities
Agrosystem diversification: (1) reduces food resources of specialist
pests, and (2) boosts the diversity and sustainability of food resources
and habitats for beneficial organisms. Studies carried out by the
Centre for Biology and Management of Populations (UMR CBGP)
are focused on generalist predatory mites (Phytoseiidae), the most
efficient natural enemies in viticulture. The aim is to characterize
the role of agroecological infrastructures at different scales (plots,
environments surrounding plots) in order to propose agrosystem
management options.

whose impacts on Phytoseiidae densities have yet to be investigated.
Several studies on the effects of the environment surrounding the
vineyard have highlighted the presence of these predators, especially
Kampimodromus aberrans, on nettle, fig, pubescent oak and red
dogwood trees, indicating that these plants would be good candidates
for sustainable management of vineyard agrosystems. Finally the
‘landscape’ approach launched in 2014 seems to show a relationship
between the landscape complexity and Phytoseiidae and pollen
density.

‘Centred plot’ approaches (agroforestry management of vineyards
with pines and Sorbus domestica) have revealed that plant diversity
does not lead to predator diversity. However, this does not affect
biocontrol applications because the species observed—on both
trees and grapevines—are efficient natural enemies. These studies
also showed that the grapevine variety has a greater impact than
agroforestry management on Phytoseiidae mite densities. Finally,
although the co-planted trees serve as predator reservoirs, this effect
must be modulated depending on factors such as competition, tree
shade and pollen (quantity, type) disseminated on the grapevines and

The potential effects of agroecological management are promising.
Although these studies have led to some progress, many unknowns
still have to be clarified concerning interactions between agronomic,
ecophysiological and impact factors on Phytoseiidae mites. Future
collaborations between researchers in different disciplines focused on
different topics are needed to shed light on these unknown factors.

q Two plot research sites with contrasted environments
in Pyrénées-Orientales region (France)

Contacts:
Marie-Stéphane Tixier, marie-stephane.tixier@supagro.fr
Martial Douin, martial.douin@supagro.fr
Ghais Zriki, ghais.zriki@supagro.inra.fr
Serge Kreiter, serge.kreiter@supagro.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/cbgp_eng

© Chambre d’agriculture des Pyrénées Orientales

p Phytoseiidae
© G. Zriki/Montpellier SupAgro

Domaine du Chapitre is one of the
two experimental wine-growing
estates of Montpellier SupAgro. This
estate, which is located at Villeneuvelès-Maguelone, 10 km from La
Gaillarde campus (Montpellier),
covers a 130 ha area, including 35 ha
of vineyards. Seven agents (INRA,
Montpellier SupAgro) manage and
maintain the vines and market the
products. Teaching, experimental
research and vitiviniculture
innovation transfer are handled at the
plot and entire vineyard scales.
This estate—which was long
devoted exclusively to grapevine
breeding and the dissemination
of new varieties—is currently
involved in the conservation of
genetic resources of ‘the rarest vines’
(repository with potted rootstock).
The estate also hosts experimental
plots managed by UMR AGAP for
research programmes focused
on genes of agricultural interest
and selection of resistant parents.
Finally, for UMT Géno-Vigne®, the

estate sets up and manages plots for
studying the adaptation to climate
change of foreign grapevine varieties.
In partnership with IFV, it also
propagates varieties from breeding
programmes and disseminates them
within the wine-growing sector.
Domaine du Chapitre has also been
collaborating with UMR SYSTEM
for over 10 years. The operational
vineyard provides support for
research programmes focused on
agronomic viticulture practices,
assessment of conventional and
innovative viticulture system
performance at the plot scale. This
arrangement enables the analysis of
different agricultural options geared
towards reducing pesticide inputs
in viticulture and the environmental
impact of implemented cropping
practices.
Since 2015, the estate has been
involved in an ambitious project
aimed at creating an operational
site for digital viticulture at the
vitiviniculture estate scale and
associate companies that implement
the latest technological advances
in agriculture (plot monitoring and

p View of the Domaine du Chapitre
© Montpellier SupAgro

management, running equipment
and managing the material, work
organization, vineyard management).
This UMR ITAP coordinated project
(see p. 48) already involves several
partners, including Vivelys (a
company that develops and provides
advice on tools for the vitiviniculture
sector, hosted by the Domaine du
Chapitre business centre) and SMAG
(Smart Agriculture, which develops
and publishes agricultural software in
Montpellier).

Viticulture and Wine

A Languedoc vineyard estate
for vitiviniculture training
and development

27

Viticulture and Wine
28

 Devatting red wine from a fermenter
© F. Dell’Ova/UEPR

Knowledge
for controlling
wine quality

M

The research aims to generate knowledge that could be
used to improve quality control regarding the products, as
well as the winemaking and preservation processes. But
the wine quality development process has to be clearly
understood before it can be controlled. Molecules, blends
and complex interactions between molecules—which
researchers strive to unravel—underlie the characteristics
of wine, including the colour, flavour, astringency, etc. In this
framework, the teams develop programmes to gain insight
into the mechanisms involved in the formation of key
quality constituents such as phenolic compounds, flavours
and polysaccharides. Knowledge on the organization
of these systems and their responses to technological
interventions (e.g. winemaking conditions) is essential
for tailoring production and winemaking sequences.
Precision oenology is also based on this knowledge and
on mathematics for the development of prediction tools
(see p. 47). The projects also take into account advances
in innovative technologies, which broaden the range
of tools proposed to winemakers for winemaking and
wine preservation. Moreover, new constraints associated
with the reduction of inputs and the impacts of climate
change on wine characteristics are accounted for in these
processes so as to mitigate their effects (see p. 57).

Fermentation microorganisms are also under the spotlight.
Fermentation yeasts are a prime focus of research in many
team projects as they play a key role in the winemaking
process, while also impacting wine quality. As in other
fields, research has been highly intensive on yeast genomes
over the last decade. These studies have revealed how
remarkably wine yeasts have evolved under oenological
environment constraints into the current yeasts that are
so well tailored and efficient for winemaking. In addition,
the research has shed fresh light on the genetic basis
of winemaking yeast properties (ability to ferment or
form certain flavours). This will enable the development
of new strategies to investigate biodiversity or improve
yeast strains. The role of yeasts in wine flavour formation
is also the focus of studies, ranging from specific aspects
of their biogenesis to integrating them in fermentation
management strategies.
All projects carried out on these topics are supported
by a set of research and technical platforms (polyphenol,
aroma and sensory analysis, fermentation room), which
play a key role in this system. The tools are also fully
accessible to economic stakeholders and help strengthen
ties with partners. Many research programmes on these
topics are thus being carried out in the framework of
partnerships with companies or stakeholders of the
sector, thus creating conditions that are particularly
favourable for the transfer of innovations developed by
the laboratories.
Bruno Blondin (UMR SPO)
Jean-Michel Salmon (UE Pech Rouge)
& Rémi Guérin-Schneider (UMT Qualinnov)

Viticulture and Wine

aking wines that meet consumer expectations
while taking new health quality requirements
into account and reducing the environmental
and climate change impacts are challenges
addressed by research teams of the Agropolis viticulture
and wine community. This is done by combining
fundamental knowledge building on all aspects of the
chain, from the vines to the glass. Highly targeted studies
are focused on levers of action that could lead to
technological innovations.

29

Knowledge
for controlling
wine quality
Understanding the
mechanisms involved
in the wine quality
development process
The joint research unit Sciences
for Enology (UMR SPO – INRA,
Montpellier SupAgro, UM) conducts
research aimed primarily at
generating knowledge to gain greater
insight into mechanisms involved in
the development of wine quality.
The first theme concerns
the integrative physiology of
winemaking yeasts and fermentation
management. Winemaking yeasts
have unique features within the
Saccharomyces cerevisiae species
as a result of selection induced
by the oenological environment
and humans. Research carried
out by the research unit aims to
gain insight into the mechanisms
that could be involved in these
evolutionary processes and to identify
the molecular basis of the strain
properties. The integrated functioning
of the metabolism and the basis
of the metabolic diversity are also
studied. The knowledge produced is
used to develop strain improvement
strategies.

u Automated
control of alcoholic
fermentation kinetics
© C.Verriès/INRA

Main teams
UMR SPO
Sciences for Enology
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/UM)
45 scientists

Viticulture and Wine

UMT Qualinnov
(IFV/INRA)
6 scientists

30

Pech Rouge Experimental Unit
(INRA)
6 scientists, 30 engineers and technicians
Other teams focused on this topic
UMR Physiology and Experimental
Medicine: Heart – Muscles
(UM/INSERM/CNRS)
51 scientists, with 5 involved in the topic

The alcoholic fermentation process
is the result of interactions between
yeasts, the must composition and
fermentation control method
(possible temperature adjustments,
the addition of nutrients, etc.).
The overall aim is to describe the
course of alcoholic fermentation in
fine detail using online monitoring
systems, to model it and develop
new control methods in order to
optimize the fermentation kinetics
and organoleptic features of wines.
Complex yeast ecosystems, including
non-Saccharomyces organisms, are
also investigated.
The second theme concerns
phenolic compounds constituting
a large family of metabolites that
have a key role in wine quality.
The research aims to gain further
insight into their structural
characteristics and the mechanisms
that generate these molecules
(biosynthesis pathways, reactions
that occur during technological
processes), physicochemical
interaction mechanisms involving
these compounds with other

macromolecules (polysaccharides,
proteins), and their impacts on the
product quality or on the efficiency/
selectivity of the technological
processes involved. This knowledge is
then used to develop new strategies
for controlling technological processes
(extraction, stabilization, etc.) and
new applications of oenological
interest. Moreover, applications are
sought in other areas, especially for
producing biomaterials.
Facilities of collective interest are
grouped in an analytical platform
(regional research and large technical
platform) devoted to structural
analysis and polyphenol interactions,
and technical platforms (sensory
analysis room, volatile compound
analysis platform, biotechnology
room).
Research projects—thanks to the
integrated approaches with UE Pech
Rouge and UMT QUALINNOV and
strong industrial partnerships—can
be efficiently conducted at pilot and
preindustrial scales.

Fermentation aromas, which have an important role on the aromatic
characteristics of young wines, are synthesized by yeasts. These
aromas belong to different chemical families, with the first and
foremost being higher alcohols and esters. The metabolic pathways
leading to their synthesis had mostly been clearly identified, but
there were many lingering questions regarding their regulations and
means of action to alter the synthesis of these compounds. UMR
SPO addressed these questions by carrying out a multidisciplinary
research study at:
 the yeast level, with the implementation of different approaches:
studying metabolic fluxes using isotopic labelling, gene expression
analysis (transcriptomic)

 the fermentation level, with precise monitoring of the synthesis
dynamics (one point per hour) of the main aromatic molecules
using online gas chromatography while determining the gas-liquid
balances in order to calculate the total compound production.
These studies have led to major advances in understanding how the
metabolism works, demonstrating: (1) the predominant share of the
carbon metabolism in comparison to the Ehrlich pathway* for the
synthesis of higher alcohols and acetate esters, and (2) the key role
of acetyl-coenzyme A.
A study of the combined effects of the main fermentation
parameters (temperature, must nitrogen and lipid composition) also
led to results of practical interest, with fermentation implementation
conditions conducive to the production of fermentation aromas
being recommended. This study was carried out in collaboration with
the Lallemand company, which is now able to advise winemakers
on the choice of strains as well as on the optimal implementation
conditions.
*An amino acid degradation pathway
and a major source of aroma in fermented products.

Contacts:
Jean-Marie Sablayrolles, sablayro@supagro.inra.fr
Sylvie Dequin, dequin@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/spo_eng

 Online gas chromatography

© INRA

Winemaking yeasts – genomes, history and evolution
Saccharomyces cerevisiae is the quintessential wine yeast. This
species has been associated with human activity for millennia
and can be isolated from natural environments. The use of yeasts
for fermentation has gradually, over time, led to the selection
of specialized strains with unique phenotypic features. The rapid
development of high-throughput sequencing approaches recently
shed new light on the evolutionary history of these strains and
enabled studies on mechanisms that have shaped the genome of this
species and adaptation to an ecological niche.

These genomic data represent a unique resource to clarify
the factors underlying the adaptation to ecological niches and
technological properties of strains, thus offering new opportunities
for improvement.
Contacts:
Sylvie Dequin, dequin@supagro.inra.fr
Jean-Luc Legras, legrasjl@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/spo_eng

UMR SPO has conducted various studies in this context:
 by sequencing and analysing the complete genome of a first
commercial wine yeast (Lalvin EC1118®)
 by conducting population genomics studies based on comparative
analysis of the genome of 74 yeast strains of various niches
associated with human activity (wine, flor, rum, bread, dairy
products) and eight natural oak isolates
 by studying the phenotypic diversity of these strains during
winemaking fermentation.
These studies have led to key advances in the understanding of the
S. cerevisiae population structure, lifestyles and adaptive mechanisms
by highlighting: (1) different genetic groups corresponding to different
ecological niches, (2) horizontal transfers of specific winemaking yeast
genes derived from distant yeast species and playing a key role in
adaptation to their environment, (3) a diverse range of mechanisms
(introgressions, gene transfers, amplifications, allelic variations)
contributing to the genetic and phenotypic diversity of strains.

 Phylogenetic tree of
Saccharomyces cerevisiae
The wine strain group is circled.
© J.-L. Legras

t Saccharomyces cerevisiae
© S. Marsit

Viticulture and Wine 

Understanding the biosynthesis of aroma compounds during fermentation

31

Knowledge for controlling wine quality

Understanding the physicochemical interactions of tannins
and their impact on wine characteristics
Physicochemical interactions—like biological, biochemical and
chemical transformations—occur throughout the winemaking
process and influence the composition and organoleptic
characteristics of the end products.
For red wines, tannin interactions have a marked impact on wine
quality (astringency, limpidity, colour stability, etc.) and on the
efficiency of certain technological operations (extraction, fining,
filtration, stabilization, etc.).
These interactions can occur in solution or at the interfaces (plant
and microorganism cell walls, materials), and involve other (macro)
molecules of wine or exogenous compounds (fining adjuvants,
additives, salivary proteins in case of astringency).

Viticulture and Wine

They are highly affected by the degree of polymerization, the
conformation and nature of tannins. But the structural features of
tannins extracted from grapes change substantially in wines because
of their chemical reactivity. This leads to the formation of tannins
and derived pigments (tannins/anthocyanin reactions) that have

32

different structures and properties than those of their precursors
and which account for the majority of tannins present in the finished
products.
The astringency sensation associated with tannin interactions, for
instance, is often marked in young wines but decreases during ageing
due to structural changes.
Research studies carried out by UMR SPO have shown that
these changes are highly dependent on the initial composition,
pH, dissolved oxygen management and generally the adopted
winemaking methods. These studies also highlighted the potential
impact of these changes on the conformation of tannins and their
physicochemical properties (interactions in solution or at interfaces).
The identification of the structures and mechanisms involved is used
to develop innovative quality control processes and products.
Contacts :
Aude Vernhet, aude.vernhet@supagro.fr
Céline Poncet-Legrand, poncetc@supagro.inra.fr
or celine.poncet@inra.fr

p Structural changes in tannins and anthocyanins during winemaking and
ageing—impact on their physicochemical interactions and wine features
© A.Vernhet/Montpellier SupAgro

Tannin oxidation markers to measure the oxidation status of wines
Oxidation is an increasingly important issue in the winemaking
sector. Global warming (increased pH) and the reduction of inputs
(decreased SO2 levels) are conducive to oxidation phenomena, which
modify the organoleptic quality of wines (colour, astringency, aromas)
in an uncontrolled way. It is essential to gain full insight into these
oxidation phenomena so as to be able to assess—and ultimately
control—their impact on wine quality.
Characterizing the oxidation status of wine from a chemical
standpoint and measuring it using simple methods is currently difficult
because of the very high complexity of the molecular composition of
wines.
In this setting, research carried out by UMR SPO is geared towards
identifying oxidation markers that could be used to measure
the oxidation status of wines. Amongst the constituents of wine,
polyphenols are good potential markers from a quantitative and
qualitative viewpoint. Tannins are the most abundant polyphenols in
grapes, and are present to various extents in wines depending on the
technological winemaking sequence implemented. These compounds
are complex (polymers) heterogeneous structures and thus hard to
analyse, which is why few studies have been focused on them with
regard to their involvement in oxidation.
These studies have revealed the presence of oxidation marker
structural motifs in tannins, with over 60 markers being identified.
This method is to be automated in order to facilitate studies and
systematic measurement of these markers in many wines. The aim
of this high-throughput analysis is to assess the extent of tannin
oxidation in the overall oxidation process in wines and to determine
its impact on the organoleptic quality of wines.

p Separation of phenolic compounds of wine, with yellow staining
due to tannin oxidation
© F. Veran/UMR SPO

Contacts:
Laetitia Mouls, laetitia.mouls@supagro.inra.fr
Hélène Fulcrand, helene.fulcrand@supagro.inra.fr

Benefits of red grape polyphenols

CH2CH2OH

HO

Promising results have been obtained in animals and humans under
certain conditions. The (more controversial) results obtained in
humans could be explained by interindividual variations in polyphenol
transformation by intestinal microbiota (bacterial flora of the
digestive tract). The latter enables 80% assimilation of polyphenols
and modulates inflammation by lipopolysaccharides. Conversely,
the microbiota composition depends on the dietary intake of
polyphenols.
Studies carried out by the team thus aim to demonstrate that
treatment with a polyphenol supplementation nutritional dose
could enhance the insulin sensitivity of obese patients as compared
to standard obesity care. As the absence of anti-obesity treatment
demonstrated a satisfactory risk/benefit ratio, it is of interest to look
for other ways of controlling insulin resistance, or even to help with
weight loss.
This project is carried out as part of a partnership with the
GRAP’SUD Union, which is specialized in producing and marketing
grape-derived products. Medical validation of the benefits of
polyphenol supplements would foster the development of derivative
regional viticulture products.
Contacts:
Ariane Sultan, a-sultan@chu-montpellier.fr
Catherine Bisbal, catherine.bisbal@inserm.fr

OH

For further information on the PhyMedExp laboratory: http://u1046.edu.
umontpellier.fr/version-anglaise-2

Vigne & Vin
Viticulture
and Wine

Studies carried out by the Nutrition-Diabetes research team
(Lapeyronie university hospital, Montpellier, France) in collaboration
with the Physiology and Experimental Medicine of Heart and Muscles
laboratory (PhyMedExp, INSERM-CNRS-CHU Arnaud de Villeneuve,
Montpellier) aim to gain further insight into mechanisms involved in
chronic disease development, especially insulin resistance and type
2 diabetes mellitus. The team thus focuses on the antioxidant and
anti-inflammatory potential of red grape polyphenols for modulating
insulin resistance, one of the obesity complications and a key
mechanism in type 2 diabetes pathogenesis. Polyphenols are indeed
able to modulate insulin resistance in animal models and cell cultures.

33

Knowledge for controlling wine quality

p Intra-plot zoning in a cv Syrah vineyard plot of UE Pech Rouge
located in the Clape massif according to changes in the plant
water status between flowering and maturity © INRA/UEPR

t Partial aerial view of UE Pech Rouge

The photo shows vineyard plots located in the coastal zone (sandy and silty sandy soils) and all of
the building facilities (technological experimentation halls, winemaking cellars, bottling hall).
© INRA/UEPR

Experimentation, innovation,
diversification and
sustainability in viticulture
and oenology

Viticulture and Wine

The Pech Rouge experimental unit
(UEPR) is the only research and
transfer structure of INRA devoted
to integrated research in viticultureoenology. This platform enables a
cross-cutting research approach
ranging from the vineyard plot to the
packaged product. Its task is to:
 design and organize experiments
from the wine-growing sector in
synergy with upstream research
 structure and carry out experiments
or research associated with the wine
profession
 ensure the transfer and
development of the most innovative
and relevant experiments by
promoting information exchange
with development stakeholders and
by participating in student training
(cellarmen and winemakers).

34

The unit’s main focuses of research
are as follows:
 the ecophysiology of grapevine
and viticulture, including gaining
a better understanding of and
controlling grape quality. Since

2010, as a regional, national and
international viticulture testing
platform, the unit has oriented
its research according to the
agroclimatic and social setting
in the South of France—high
temperatures, drought, high pH
and potassium contents, reduced
grape and wine acidity, irrigation,
etc.—comparable to the setting
in other wine-growing regions
in the Mediterranean Basin and
elsewhere, e.g. Portugal, Australia,
South America and California. The
unit’s 38 ha of plots are distributed
in three zones with different soils,
so tests can be carried out under
different levels of water stress,
ranging from moderate to extreme
drought.
 winemaking and processes aimed at
proposing and studying innovative
technologies that can be applied to
different winemaking phases. The
lines of research include studying
the expression of the qualitative
potential in grapes or wines,
online monitoring and alcoholic
fermentation management.

Research is conducted in 5 000 m2
of buildings (technological
experimentation rooms, winemaking
cellars, bottling workshops, ageing
and storage cellars) through
‘product-process’ oriented studies.
Knowledge on the products is based
on the analytical expertise of UEPR,
UMR SPO and associated technical
platforms, including the sensory
analysis platform. The activities
of the Innovative Technology–
OEnology team, with the support of
networks and partnerships (GMPA1,
SPO, LBE2), are hinged on knowledge
on processes and their impacts on
grape juice and wine quality. The
Viticulture– Quality Grapes team
focuses on grape quality. Precise
knowledge of wine compounds,
such as quality markers, is enhanced
through partnership projects with
UMR SPO and UMT QUALINNOV
(aromas and precursors, polyphenolic
and polysaccharide compounds).
1 UMR Microbiology and Food
Process Engineering (INRA/AgroParisTech)
2 UR Laboratory of Environmental
Biotechnology (INRA)

Decanter centrifuge – a promising alternative to direct pressing for
white and rosé winemaking
The horizontal screw decanter centrifuge was
introduced a few years ago in the winemaking
sector. This technology was first tested for heattreated grape must extraction because it can
separate suspended solids from liquids. After a
few technological modifications, it can now be
used to directly extract must from grapes and
is thus an excellent alternative to conventional
pneumatic pressing systems. To assess its
advantages in the winemaking process, UE Pech
Rouge, in partnership with the company Alfa Laval,
has been studying fresh grape processing using
this technology since 2007. The main features of
this centrifuge decanter are that it can be used in
continuous mode and that the must extraction
time is extremely short (residence time in the
 Cross-section of the decanter centrifuge © Alfa Laval
extraction bowl around one minute). It can thus
be integrated directly for must-marc separation
from de-stemmed grapes in white and rosé winemaking processes. Qualitative extraction can be achieved at roughly the same yields as
obtained with pneumatic pressing systems. The extraction features can thus be modified by adjusting the decanter centrifuge operating
parameters, but also by installing additional equipment such as a grape homogenizer or a metering pump upstream of the centrifuge. The
metering pump can inject antioxidants prior to grape burst, thus rationally and efficiently controlling must oxidation. Unlike conventional
pneumatic pressing systems—where protection against must oxidation during pressing requires specific adaptations of the press (total inert
gas blanketing or sulphite sprays within the press cage)—the major advantage of the decanter centrifuge is that various additives can be
injected upstream of the centrifuge during extraction to control must oxidation. These antioxidants can thus act immediately upon grape
cell compartment disruption. This is crucial because cell destructuring puts the three elements necessary for the initial oxidation reaction in
contact—native phenolic compounds and polyphenol oxidase enzymes of the grapes, and atmospheric oxygen.
Contacts:
Jean-Michel Salmon, jmsalmon@supagro.inra.fr
Rémi Guérin-Schneider, remi.schneider@vignevin.com

Preservation of white and rosé wines in Languedoc-Roussillon
Currently 40% of wines produced in Languedoc-Roussillon
region (France) are exported, while the domestic market (60% of
volumes) is strongly oriented towards supermarket distribution.
These orientations have two production constraints, i.e. to obtain
wines that correspond to typical consumer-friendly profiles, while
guaranteeing qualitative regularity throughout the marketing year
—which is problematic since the sought-after profiles seem to be
qualitatively ‘fragile’. Being able to offer tailored products year round
is a challenge and various practices have emerged that range from
the ‘refreshment’ of wines to the deferred vinification of cooled
musts. The basic problem is, however, associated with aromatic and
polyphenolic modifications that occur in wines during storage due
to oxidation.

UMT QUALINNOV—through a multidisciplinary approach that
includes viticulture-oriented agronomy, technology, microbiology and
analysis—is striving to develop integrated vitiviniculture sequences
to enable the development of wine profiles tailored to meet market
expectations, while improving their preservation by controlling
oxidation phenomena. This initiative, which has never been carried
out at this scale in Languedoc-Roussillon, will help to better refine
and characterize the composition of the raw material and thus to
adapt winemaking technological processes to apply according to the
material’s qualitative potential and susceptibility to oxidation.

p Rosé wine bottles displayed on backlit shelves

© INRA

Contacts:
Jean-Michel Salmon, jmsalmon@supagro.inra.fr
Rémi Guérin-Schneider, remi.schneider@vignevin.com

Viticulture and Wine

This programme, funded by the Comité Interprofessionnel des Vins du
Languedoc and the Conseil régional du Languedoc-Roussillon, addresses
the oxidation issue in an integrative way, from vineyard management
to storage and conditioning. It proposes:
 to assess the intrinsic capacity of oxidation resistance of regional
varieties and the viticulture levers (nitrogen nutrition, irrigation)
to implement so as to enhance them, while incorporating studies
on INRA resistant varieties (Pech Rouge site)
 to technically and economically develop and assess production
processes tailored for these varieties
 to test new qualitative must extraction technologies.

35

Knowledge for controlling wine quality

Offering professional
winemakers quality
analysis tools for managing
technological processes
The joint technology unit (UMT)
QUALINNOV (IFV, INRA) conducts
R&D programmes to develop new
tools for characterizing the aromatic,
polyphenolic and sanitary quality of
grapes and wines.
The UMT aims to enhance knowledge
on the development of qualitative
features during grape production and
processing, while providing the sector
with access to tools and methods for
managing these processes according
to the typology of the requested
product.
To fulfil these objectives, UMT
QUALINNOV pools expertise in
viticulture-oriented agronomy,
oenology and analytical chemistry
in order to contribute to the

development of quality wines and
grape beverages that meet consumer
expectations with regard to both
sensorial (aromas, polyphenols) and
sanitary features. It also benefits
from experimental facilities at the UE
Pech Rouge site―plots, instrumented
experimental platforms, and
analytical resources, while also having
privileged access to instrumental
platforms at INRA in Montpellier.
The research conducted by UMT
QUALINNOV is focused on:
 Polyphenols: the contribution
of high-throughput
spectrophotometry in the
characterization and understanding
of factors that determine the
polyphenolic quality of wines:
- adaptation of colour analysis
developed for red and rosé wines
- overall estimation of polyphenol
families from the visible UV
spectrum of a wine in acidic
environments

q High-throughput measurement of red and rosé wine colour components
by visible UV spectrophotometry

Viticulture and Wine

© M.A. Ducasse/IFV

36

- estimation of the astringency
by a protein precipitation based
method
- application of these measures in
joint projects under way.
 Aromas: understanding interactions
between aroma precursor
compounds and microorganisms
for the development of the aromatic
potential of grapes and musts:
- turbidity: link between the
bioaccessibility of grape sterols,
yeast viability and secondary
metabolisms associated with
alcoholic fermentation
- nitrogen composition: impact
on the revelation/degradation of
amino acid type aroma precursors
by yeasts and lactic bacteria.

Technical platform for sensory analysis of wines and grape juice
The sensory analysis technical platform focuses on measuring and
controlling the organoleptic qualities of wines and grape juice. It
is primarily involved in research programmes of its two parent
units—UMR SPO and UE Pech Rouge. An expert jury consisting
of 23 selected and trained people (non-professionals in the wine
sector) serves as its measurement tool. This unique feature ensures
objectivity in their analyses because the judges are unaware of the
research programme objectives. The facilities include two sensory
analysis rooms: one room for the working group and an analysis
laboratory with 16 individual cabins with online data input potential,
all of which is managed by the FIZZ software package (Biosystèmes,
Couternon, France).
The methods used are derived from sensory analysis standards and
adapted to the programme objectives. They include the conventional
profile (quantitative descriptive analysis), difference tests, Napping®,
and the determination of perception thresholds.

The platform also has expertise in sensory and physicochemical data
cross-tabulation via correlation or multi-criteria analysis (multiple
factor analysis, etc.).
The platform was involved in different topics and conducted sensory
assessments on the impact of winemaking processes (stabilization,
clarification, yeasts strains, etc.), on the effects of wine oxidation
and links with conditioning materials, on the impact of intrinsic
compounds in wine (white wine bitterness, polyphenols, etc.), on the
effects of viticulture practices (management strategies, water stress,
etc.) and links between the typicity and wine-growing terroirs, new
grapevine varieties resistant to fungal diseases or for the production
of low-alcohol wines or low-sugar juices.
The team also provides training for university and engineering
school students.

Contact:
Alain Samson,
alain.samson@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.
montpellier.inra.fr/spo_eng/
Common-structures/Sensoryanalysis

© G. Bouteillier

p Assessment of wines by an expert
jury in individual cabins © A. Kerr

Polyphenol analysis platform
Phenolic compounds (often called polyphenols) constitute a large family of plant secondary metabolites. They are involved in plant
dissemination and defence mechanisms and are essential for the quality of plant products. These molecules are especially abundant in
grapes and wine, and include anthocyanins, which are red grape pigments, hydroxycinnamic acids, which are involved in enzymatic browning
phenomena, tannins, and stilbenes (such as resveratrol).
The Polyphenol Platform (PFP) offers a range of approaches (mass spectrometry, nuclear magnetic resonance, spectrophotometry,
chemometrics) devoted specifically to phenolic compound analysis. It provides support for the entire scientific community and industrial
stakeholders, while offering technical and advisory assistance for partners and clients, mainly in response to two types of request:
u identification and structural analysis of phenolic compounds
v rapid analysis of the phenolic composition of a high number of
samples (metabolomics, phenotyping, especially in connection with
genetic breeding programmes or relative to studies on the impact
of the environment and cropping practices on plant quality) or their
processed products (authentication, process monitoring, property
prediction).

Viticulture and Wine

PFP is involved in the European InnoVine project (‘Combining
innovation in vineyard management and genetics for sustainable
European viticulture’). It also contributes to many industrial
projects aimed at establishing links between the phenolic
composition and quality, or predicting the impact of technological
operations on these features. Some examples of recent work to
support the sector include colour analysis of rosé wines (Centre
du Rosé, IFV, UMT QUALINNOV collaboration), prediction of the
colour of blended rosé wines (Nyseos company), prediction of the
astringency of red wines (Pilotype project), studies on the impact
of oxygen transfer through corks (Nomacorc company) or bottles
(Novinpak project, see p. 42) on the wine quality.
Contact:
Véronique Cheynier, cheynier@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/spo_eng/Commonstructures/Polyphenol-Platform

 View of the polyphenol analysis platform

© N. Sommerer

37

Viticulture and Wine
38

p Example of a few publications of social science
researchers concerning the sector
© Montpellier SupAgro

Social science,
innovation and sectoral
transformation approaches

It is hard to study wines from the huge Languedoc winegrowing region without conducting an in-depth analysis of
the activities of its structures and stakeholders, including
wine cooperatives, the first of which was founded by
visionary vine growers from Maraussan in 1901. New
analyses of the current cooperative setting in the 21st
century are emerging: new governance arrangements,
cooperative groups and subsidiaries, quests for new
guarantees associated with local development, corporate
social responsibility and sustainable production.
Some researchers have conducted studies on innovation
processes and are active monitors of these changes, while
others are more focused on the managerial approach,
analysing ‘coopetition’* phenomena (see p. 44) and building
collective reference frameworks that can be monitored
between stakeholders within the same areas.
The winemaking sphere will soon, however, be globalized
and economists in Montpellier—experts with a history
of commitment to the International Organisation of
Vine and Wine dating back to 1924—began studying
changes under way over the last 20 years driven by ‘New
World’ winemakers and the emergence of the World
Trade Organization. Market globalization, concomitant
to the profound quantitative and qualitative changes in
national consumption patterns under way, has precipitated
French wine companies into unknown waters concerning

marketing, export to new markets and the importance of
‘brands’, which until now have been quite discrete with
regard to designations of origin in the French wine sector.
Subsequent to findings of regular analyses on consumption
patterns in France, international comparative studies were
launched on visual codes, in addition to new semiotic
analyses that highlighted the impact of different label
designs on the purchasing habits of Asian consumers with
very different cultural references.
Globalization has also prompted reconsideration of firmly
anchored premises in the sector. France has refocused
the spotlight on variables that link grapevine yield with
the profitability of wine production units as a response
to trends in competing products on world markets.
Moreover, it has become clear that the usual wine
innovation pathways taken since ancient times are even
more numerous than initially perceived—ranging from
grapevines resistant to fungal diseases to fermentationinducing yeasts, AOC wines promoting ‘terroir’ flavours
to wines with or without a geographical indication (GI),
seeking a competitive edge on the world market, wines
more tailored to meet the demand for ‘natural’ products,
to viticulture practices capable of addressing the effects
of climate change, which are already being felt and are
forecasted to become even more severe.
These changes and innovations are supported and
promoted by Montpellier researchers, including economic
analysts, observers involved in systemic interactions
(between stakeholders and disciplines), marketing advisers
serving companies, and prospective analysts of the
Institute for Higher Education in Vine and Wine Sciences
(IHEV) responsible for forecasting the sector’s future.

Hervé Hannin (Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV)
* More or less long-term cooperation between competitors

Viticulture and Wine

D

In a ‘tradition-oriented’ wine world, human
science researchers in Montpellier (France)
readily refer to historical figures such as Jules
Milhau who first modelled wine prices in
the first half of the 20th century. That was at the time
when wine from the South of France—often considered
simply as ‘raw material’—was destined to accompany the
industrial revolution and was seriously marked by the
trauma caused by the post-phylloxera overproduction
phenomenon that occurred in 1907. Economists
thereafter monitored viticulture patterns, first by taking
into account the official division (in 1935) between wines
with an appellation of origin and table wines, as set out
in the ‘Wine Statute’, which was a guarantee of regular
support by unwavering public policies, even until present
time with its inherent new challenges. It is in this setting
that public policies, which are now—since the first
common market organization in 1970—under European
authority, are still being analysed, along with current
aspects such as vine planting rights, which have recently
been questioned.

39

Social science,
innovation and sectoral
transformation approaches

Innovation for agroecological
and climatic transitions
The joint research unit Innovation
and Development in Agriculture
and the Agrifoods Sector (UMR
Innovation – INRA, Montpellier
SupAgro, CIRAD) conducts
multidisciplinary research in
France and worldwide on technical,
organizational and institutional
innovation processes. The research
is focused on all processes, from
stakeholders’ innovation motives,
to concrete ways to implement
change, and to the impacts of these
innovations on development.

Main teams

Viticulture and Wine

UMR Innovation
Innovation and Development in
Agriculture and the Agrifoods Sector
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/CIRAD)
50 scientists, with 4 involved in the topic

40

UMR Moisa
Markets, Organizations, Institutions and
Stakeholders Strategies
(CIRAD/INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/
Ciheam-IAMM)
65 scientists, with 8 involved in the topic
Wine Business Group
(Montpellier Business School)
8 scientists

The UMR has always conducted
innovation studies on viticulture and
wine. The first studies concerned the
conditions needed to transform the
sector in order to enhance quality
at vineyard, wine cooperative,
wine-growing region and market
scales (geographical indications).
Research was then reoriented towards
innovations addressing challenges
regarding agroecological transitions
and climate change. The research
unit has thus been instrumental in
giving new impetus to research on:
 climate change: joint coordination
of the Long-term Adaptation to
Climate Change in Viticulture and
Enology (LACCAVE) project (see
p. 58)
 winegrowers’ commitment to
programmes to reduce pesticide
treatments: DEPHY project—
demonstration farm networks,
experiments and production of
benchmarks on low-pesticide
input systems (see p. 62); and the
Panoramix project—design and
development of viticulture systems
that combine resistant varieties and
complementary crop protection
methods (see p. 63)
 the evolution of wine-growing
landscapes in response to these
challenges in Mediterranean
regions: the Mediterranean
Landscapes and Terroirs project
(PATERMED; see next page).

Researchers of this unit who
participate in these projects share
a systemic vision of innovation
and conduct in-depth analyses
on its economic, geographical,
agronomic and sociological aspects.
Innovation processes are thus
pinpointed, analysed and sometimes
supported (research-action projects),
based on monitoring and surveys
of stakeholders (wine growers,
researchers, advisers, suppliers, etc.).
The research findings have confirmed
the impacts of innovation and
associated training networks on the
competitiveness of vineyards and
their ability to adapt to climatic and
ecological issues. In all vineyards,
collective action and interprofessional
organizations have a clear role in
different, and relatively efficient,
ways. The research has also revealed
that innovation is an inherent factor
in different technological models
that coexist in the sector (PDO labels
terroir, technological PGI, organic
agriculture, etc.). New types of
collaboration between agricultural
research and other stakeholders of
this sector are even offered to address
the need to combine practical and
scientific knowledge according to the
features of each vineyard.

p Grapevines uprooted in the Minervois wine-growing region

© E. Montaigne

PATERMED project – vineyard landscapes embedded in
agricultural systems in Mediterranean France
The Mediterranean Landscapes and Terroirs
(PATERMED) programme (2010-2014) aimed
to analyse and promote vineyard and olive
grove landscapes in the Mediterranean South
of France. Research carried out in Montpellier
by Innovation and AGAP joint research units, in
collaboration with different teams*, highlighted
the cultural and operational quality of these
landscapes at different geographical scales
(from individual sites to the entire French
Mediterranean area). Moreover, the studies
revealed the processes that transform these
landscapes: urbanization, fragmentation of
agricultural areas, maintenance of wine-and
olive-growing activities, uprooting, environmental
issues, labelling and geographical indications,
the development of tourism and recreational
activities, etc.

A major contribution of PATERMED is the publication (in
French) of the Atlas des paysages de la vigne et de l’olivier en France
méditerranéenne (Ed. Quæ, 2014), which describes the different
types of landscape and their changes as a result of issues such as
urbanization, wine sector development and biodiversity, and heritage
protection.
The results and deliverables of the PATERMED project, especially
this landscape atlas, offer land-use managers and viticulture sector
managers some food for thought and a decision-support tool to
address landscape issues, which are also primary concerns for many
local authorities.

p Dynamics of a wine region

© C. Arnal, 2013

* UMR TELEMME - Temps, Espaces, Langages, Europe Méridionale, Méditerranée
(Aix-Marseille Université / CNRS) ; UMR ESPACE - Étude des structures, des processus
d’adaptation et des changements de l’espace (CNRS / Aix-Marseille Université /
Université d’Avignon et des pays du Vaucluse / Université de Nice Sophia-Antipolis) ;
UR LOTERR - Centre d’étude et de recherche sur les paysages (Université de Lorraine) ;
Afidol - Association française interprofessionnelle de l’olive ; Syndicat des vins de
Côtes de Provence ; INAO - Institut national de l’origine et de la qualité.

Contact:
Lucette Laurens, lucette.laurens@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: http://patermed.over-blog.com

Viticulture and Wine

The studies gained further insight into two
topics of importance for wine-growing regions
like Languedoc that are in the conversion
process: agricultural, territorial and landscape
impacts of vineyard land clearing; and the use of
vineyard and olive grove landscapes in local development policies,
especially in the Pic Saint-Loup and Terrasses du Larzac winegrowing areas.

41

Social science, innovation and sectoral transformation approaches
Economy and management
of the viticulture and wine
sector
The joint research unit Markets,
Organizations, Institutions and
Stakeholders Strategies (UMR
MOISA – CIRAD, INRA, Montpellier
SupAgro, CIHEAM-IAMM)
encompasses five social science
disciplines―economics, management,
sociology, political science and
anthropology. The unit has three
teams focused on: research on
consumer, agrifood, rural business
and supply chain governance;
coordination and policies for
sustainable agriculture and food; and
changing farming systems, household
strategies and resource management.
The UMR conducts research on
the common theme of sustainable
agrifood and rural development in

p A researcher talking to wine growers at a
Université de la Vigne et du Vin conference
held in Ferrals-les-Corbières (France)
© Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV

developed and developing countries.
It has a long tradition of collecting
quality primary data via direct field
surveys, underpinned by its large
international cooperation network.
The fact that the teams are based
in institutions with a strong
technical component has enhanced
interdisciplinary collaboration and
awareness of the technical dynamics.
The wine theme has benefitted from
an accumulation of knowledge and
expertise on the economic aspects
of this sector since the 1950s.
Economists are currently focusing
research on:
 wine consumption, with
participation in the national
FranceAgriMer survey, which has
been conducted every 5 years since
1980
 international trade, markets and
the global economic situation
with, over the last 20 years, annual
publication of the Cyclope World
Commodity Yearbook, as well as
competitive and economic market
summaries
 production structures—population,
family, work, setting up of young
farmers―with: (1) an assessment
of wine estates under way
according to the level of pesticide
use and crop insurance; and (2)
an assessment of the economic
and environmental performance
of wine businesses, and
characterization of the economic
model that differentiates wines with
a PDO label and those without a GI
classification

E 
uropean wine policy via several
assessments, supplemented by
studies on vineyard clearing, vine
planting rights and their impact on
wine estate development patterns
and income
 market launching, with studies
on cooperation and negotiation,
multinational corporations
and groups, designing quality
management contracts
 the dynamics of research-intensive
innovations: dealcoholization
techniques and disease-resistant
varieties.
Management science specialists focus
on the following topics:
 trademark rights, especially
regarding the rights of the Sud de
France collective
 product packaging and consumer
responses to the emergence of
novel products
 financial performance of
businesses, especially cooperatives,
and governance-performance
relations
 regional viticulture economic
information mapping
 foresight studies in the sector.
The Wine research team also takes
part in the Vin Montpellier Group—
an informal multi-institutional
network focused on the economics
and management of exchanges
concerning wine-related research,
expert groups of the International
Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV)
and Vinelink International.

Analysis of the commercial feasibility of launching
Novinpak® bottled rosé

Viticulture and Wine

A project aimed at marketing and launching PET bottles is being
conducted within the framework of a collaboration between UMR
MOISA and the company Val d’Orbieu-UCCOAR (VINADEIS). This
component of the 3-year Novinpak® project is focused on R&D
aspects and on technical feasibility, with marketing aspects handled
at the end of the project. The study on the commercial feasibility of
this innovative packaging aims especially to analyse the reactions of
potential consumers, perceived advantages and drawbacks. The aim
is also to identify the purchasing and consumption conditions for an
innovative product that is out of line with the traditional social codes
regarding wine in France.

42

From a methodological and empirical standpoint, beyond the factual
records and literature reviews on new wine packaging launches
and innovations, four surveys were conducted from March to June
2014: two focus group surveys (experts and novices), an in situ
survey involving interviews with 49 consumers questioned in the
wine section of supermarkets and hypermarkets, and an online
questionnaire survey (148 respondents).

Wine in PET bottles generally has a poor to
very bad image associated with low grade or
culinary wine. Novinpak® bottles are, however,
attractive and considered esthetically pleasing,
of trendy design, slender and elegant. The
concept was considered suitable for a rosé
product launch because this wine market
segment is the one most open to new
product launches and innovations. Surveyed
consumers were not very concerned about
the eco-friendly aspects of the plastic bottle,
which were considered to be offset by the
quality of the wine product. The convenience
feature (lightness, solidity) was more
recognized and valued by consumers.
Contact:
Foued Cheriet, cheriet@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www.novinpak.org/?set_
language=en
© Val d’OrbieuUCCOAR (VINADEIS)

STRATECOOP LR 2013 Programme
Governance, strategy and performance of wine cooperatives in
Languedoc-Roussillon
This study was carried out in the framework of a management PhD thesis
at UMR MOISA in a setting marked by profound changes (vineyard clearing,
trade globalization, mergers) and by an original governance system associated
with the cooperative status. The findings shed light on changes under way
regarding wine cooperatives in Languedoc-Roussillon (France) in terms of
corporate governance, strategic positioning and performance. This provides
wine cooperative professionals an accurate update of the situation, but above
all effective management assistance and a prospective approach.
The study was based on a close partnership with the Coop de France LR and
Dyopta (a company specialized in processing and analysing data from the
computer-based viticulture registry), and on funding from France AgriMer and
the Compte d’affectation spéciale développement agricole et rural (CASDAR). It
involved a sample of 87 wine cooperatives (45% of the total number of wine
cooperatives in the region).
The STRATECOOP LR 2013 programme resulted in identification of the most
effective trajectories for the regional wine cooperatives sector and for the
sustainability of member vineyards. The results highlighted certain governance
and commercial positioning options that were more effective than others in
terms of upstream, downstream and financial performance. A typology was
sketched out that remains to be specified in greater detail. Links were also
established between the cognitive dimension of governance (decision-making
process based on sometimes informal advisory bodies) and the long-term
financial performance.
Contact:
Louis-Antoine Saïsset, louis-antoine.saisset@supagro.fr
For further information: Saïsset L.-A., 2014. Gouvernance, investissements immatériels
et performance des entreprises coopératives agricoles. Le cas des coopératives vinicoles
du Languedoc-Roussillon. Management science PhD thesis, Montpellier SupAgro.
607 p.

p Impact of cooperative governance on the long-term
financial performance
Top: levels of internal governance: improvement of collective analysis.
Bottom: link between internal governance levels and cash flow.
Improvement of long-term performance. © L.A. Saïsset, 2014

PRECOVISION project (2009-2013)
Economic performance of wine estates and reduction of pesticide inputs

This method enables multidimensional quantitative assessment of
the performance of vineyards relative to all of those monitored,
while also characterizing the most efficient and identifying those that
could serve as benchmarks. It can also be implemented to find ways
of improving the least efficient vineyards, especially from a technical
standpoint, to reduce production costs and the use of polluting
inputs. For public policymakers, this analytical framework facilitates
measurement of the potential impact of regulations geared towards
reducing pesticide usage according to the type of wine producer.
It was applied to survey data on viticulture cropping practices* in
Languedoc-Roussillon and Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur regions
in order to assess the possibility of reducing pesticide input
quantities—at least one pass and an average 15% of quantities
used without any change in production structure, and at least two
passes and an average 31% of quantities used when shifting towards
another economically viable production structure.

The performance of wine estates is currently being modelled in
pesticide input reduction situations for protected designation of
origin (PDO) vineyards and those without a geographical indication
(GI), which enables:
 characterization of economic models of PDO vineyards and those
without GI
 assessment of possibilities for reducing pesticide inputs for PDO
vineyards and identification of limiting production factors that
hamper this reduction unless current practices or production
technologies are changed
 assessment of economic and environmental benefits derived from
a specialization in PDO wine or table wine versus coproduction of
both types of wine at vineyard and territorial scales.
For the empirical part of the project, data from the Farm
Accountancy Data Network (FADN, France). Several pesticide
reduction scenarios will be implemented to assess the potential
impact on wine estates according to the type of wine produced.
* Service central des enquêtes et études statistiques (SCEES), 2008.

Contact:
Isabelle Piot-Lepetit, isabelle.piot-lepetit@supagro.inra.fr

Viticulture and Wine

A benchmarking method was developed by UMR MOISA to
measure the economic performance of wine estates and assess
possibilities of reducing pesticide inputs without changing the
production technology, while shifting towards technology requiring
lower pesticide usage.

43

Social science, innovation
and sectoral transformation approaches

Vine planting rights
In 1935, France and Spain implemented regulations for controlling vine planting,
which were ‘temporarily’ adopted by the Common Market Organisation for Wine
in the European Union, with the exception of a short break (1970-1976). The
definitive suppression of these vine planting rights (enacted in the 2008 reform), set
for 2016 or 2018 at the latest, was highly justified but also highly rediscussed as the
deadline approached, with many professionals and elected representatives fearing
dire consequences—unbridled planting, market instability, smallholder producers, etc.
A major study that was carried out by UMR MOISA for the European Association
of Wine-growing Regions and the European Parliament (in collaboration with Italian
universities) to focus on these key issues.
Long-term case studies in Europe and the ‘New World’*
enabled the team to:
u analyse the operational procedures of these regulations
v test economies of scale associated with the size of wine-growing farms based on
data derived from the Farm Accountancy Data Network in France
w monitor the growth dynamics of these farms at the European level
x address the main criticisms of vine planting rights.
The study showed that:
p Grapevine plants

© M. Calleja

Contact:
Étienne Montaigne,
etienne.montaigne@supagro.fr
For further information:
Delord B., Montaigne E., Coelho A., 2015. Vine planting
rights, farm size and economic performance: Do
economies of scale matter in the French viticulture
sector? Wine Economics and Policy. 2015.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.wep.2015.03.001
Montaigne E., Coelho A., Delord B., Khefifi L., 2012. Étude
sur les impacts socio-économiques et territoriaux de la
libéralisation des droits de plantations viticoles. Tome 2.
Progrès Agricole et Viticole. 129(6): 108-152.

u t he size of the company is not a primary economy of scale factor, nor is the
extent of income growth
v the cost of vine planting rights does not significantly increase the cost of setting up
a vineyard
w a vine planting rights system, if used in a lax way, does not avoid overproduction
(case of Alentejo, Portugal), and has negative impacts on compliant regions
x the absence of a vine planting regulation system in the New World did not prevent
the market imbalance
y other countries have set up different market regulation mechanisms (Argentina)
z the planting rights system did not make the wine region inflexible, but enabled
reallocations in regions where there seemed to be increasing opportunities
(France, Italy, Alentejo).
These results were confirmed by other studies carried out in Italy, Germany and
Hungary.
* Australia, Spain, Portugal and Argentina.

A wine management
research group

Viticulture and Wine

The Wine Business research group
of the Montpellier Business School
consists of teacher-researchers
from the Montpellier Research in
Management (MRM) laboratory. The
research groups play a key role in the
organization and development of
research at the Montpellier Business
School.

44

Research of the Wine Business group
is focused on the wine industry
with the aim of: (1) outlining
the managerial implications for
professionals in the sector, and (2)
linking Montpellier research with the
global academic community.

Meetings are thus open to
professionals of the wine sector
invited by members. The research
findings are promoted with field
managers in workshops, during
interviews or in publications.
Exchanges and visits of international
professors and members of
prestigious academic associations
facilitate international recognition.
The research projects involve various
disciplines such as entrepreneurship,
strategic management, marketing
and finance. Academic publications
are mainly focused on coopetition
strategies between small and medium
enterprises (SMEs), consumer
perception of wine label designs
or innovative marketing channels,

such as websites. A recent collective
publication has focused on wine
sector management.
Publications of researchers of the
group have received academic
honours, such as the Best Paper
Award at the Academy of Wine
Business Research Conference or
a PhD prize from the Association
pour les recherches en économie
agroalimentaire. Several joint
research projects are under way in
various areas: coopetition strategies
between wine companies, Chinese
wine consumer expectations,
collective implementation of
corporate social responsibility, the
role of wine as a financial investment
asset, etc.

Social responsibility of wine cooperatives
This research project is focused on implementing a collective
reference framework for corporate social responsibility (CSR) via
wine cooperatives.
Vignerons en Développement Durable, an association of wine-producing
cellars devoted to sustainable development which currently pools
18 cooperatives, was studied. Fifteen of these cellars participated in
the study and 29 semi-structured interviews were conducted from
March to June 2015. The interviews involved salaried executives as
well as quality-control managers and/or vineyard managers in charge
of CSR implementation. The study was aimed at understanding how
cooperatives—sometimes competing—manage to unite to build a
collective CSR frame of reference.
The diverse range of stakeholders involved in the collective effort
—from cooperating wine growers to cooperative employees—foster
the sharing of best practices and the adoption of innovative tools.
The study revealed that successful CSR implementation depends
on the commitment of three types of stakeholders in the collective
action—leaders of cooperative structures, cooperating wine growers

and employees. It showed that the
collective CSR strategy was hinged
on a cooperative identity backup
strategy, providing a powerful tool
for dialogue with key stakeholders.
The research results concerned
collective action management
modalities and the impacts on
stakeholder involvement.
This project involved researchers
of the Wine Business Group
(Montpellier Business School) associated with professionals of the
wine sector.
Contact:
Maryline Meyer, m.meyer@montpellier-bs.com
For further information: www.montpellier-bs.com/groupe/le-centre-derecherche/groupes-de-recherche/wine-business

Wine labels tailored for the Chinese market
Programme 6, cofunded by the French Foundation for Management Education (FNEGE) in the framework of the Junior Professor Award
and by three Bordeaux wine merchants (Maison Sichel, Cheval Quancard and Grandissime), resulted in a study visit to China (in 2014) to gain
insight into Chinese consumer preferences regarding wine label designs.

This market research was conducted by an associate professor of
the Montpellier Business School and involved:
 a semiotic study on the design of wine labels in the ‘imported
wine’ category on the Chinese market
 the creation of eight wine labels representative of different types
of labels on the Chinese market
 a quantitative market research and a test of the eight created
labels on 1 400 Chinese imported wine consumers
d 
rafting of a report—presented to the three wine merchants and
FNEGE—of the market study results and recommendations to
help them create wine labels tailored for the Chinese market
w 
riting of two academic articles based on the collected data.

Viticulture and Wine

Contact:
Franck Celhay, f.celhay@montpellier-bs.com

p Example of a pre-test carried out to select labels to test

p Wine labels selected for the quantitative study

© Celhay, Cheng and Li, 2015

© Celhay, Cheng and Li, 2015

45

46

Viticulture and Wine

Meeting digital challenges
in the sector

New technologies have led to a marked increase in data
that can be acquired through wireless sensor networks
or weather stations, machine-mounted or hand-held
data logging systems, and remote-sensing platforms
(unmanned aerial vehicules, airborne devices, satellites).
Data concerning vines and the vineyard environment
(climate, soil, etc.), as well as wine processing, making and
marketing processes, are acquired at an unprecedented
spatiotemporal resolution. This generates very high flows
of diverse data which have to be processed, analysed,
shared, disseminated and stored prior to their use and
development. An incredible wealth of high volume data is
now available, which could serve to design very effective
decision support tools for the wine industry , provided
professionals have access to tailored methods to develop
their products in response to market trends and climate
change. These methods must meet a dual challenge.
First, all upstream (agricultural and environmental) and
downstream (transformation processes, consumption
patterns, etc.) data must be linked via advanced data
integration techniques, knowledge (disciplinary or
business related) and models. Secondly, knowledge must
be extracted from data by modelling and/or by inference
on phenomena whose complexity has until now been
hard to grasp. The tools and methods developed will
facilitate assessment and management of new systems
while ensuring the sustainability of the sector through an
integrative approach. They will meet needs with regard
to representation, diagnosis, assessment and decision
support for various issues, including crop protection,
environmental assessment, input management, product
quality management, etc. New complex system design
methods will also be proposed for innovations in, for
instance, equipment sizing and types, while developing new
cropping systems, breeding new varieties adapted to new
constraints, and capturing new market shares.

The Agropolis scientific community has the expertise and
facilities necessary to come up with effective responses to
the major challenges of the digital revolution. They raise
research issues for the entire viticulture and wine sector
at organizational, spatial and temporal scales. Several
research units are aware of the importance of digital
challenges in the fields of agronomy and environment.
They hence focus their methodological research—in
collaboration with their national and international, public
and private partners—on addressing the challenges
that arise. The fact that specialized engineering science,
mathematics and informatics research units, as well as
thematic research units in viticulture, ecophysiology,
oenology, etc., are pooled within Agropolis promotes
interdisciplinarity and is a prime asset.
A first type of research concerns issues associated
with measurements obtained via automated or manual
recording devices. They encompass the design of: i)
new sensors, ii) methods to ensure data quality, and iii)
innovative systems for organizing and sharing information.
A second type of research deals with specific issues
related to the influx of geolocalized data in the precision
viticulture framework, e.g. the design of spatial data
sampling and processing methods that take wine trade
knowledge into account.
Finally, the last type brings together research in different
areas: i) the analysis of huge volumes of heterogeneous
data (spatiotemporal) collected in vineyards or wine
cellars, ii) data- and knowledge-based modelling, and iii)
simulation-based modelling.
A major share of the research conducted by the
community in all of the fields presented in this chapter
concerns the effective use of data via simulation and
decision-support software packages, which are essential
for identifying new uses and implementing innovative
practices.

Brigitte Charnomordic (UMR MISTEA)
& Bruno Tisseyre (UMR ITAP)

Viticulture and Wine

T

he wine industry—like all business sectors
—has undergone a digital revolution. This
transformation has provided a unique
opportunity for stakeholders in this sector to
benefit from very high definition information and thus
enhance monitoring and management of their production
systems.

47

Meeting digital challenges
in the sector
Development of information
acquisition and usage tools
and methods for decision
support
Research carried out by the joint
research unit InformationTechnologies-environmental
Analysis-agricultural Processes
(UMR ITAP – IRSTEA, Montpellier
SupAgro) fulfils needs regarding

Main teams
UMR ITAP
Information-Technologies-environmental
Analysis-agricultural Processes
(Irstea/Montpellier SupAgro)
25 scientists, with 14 involved in the topic
UMR LIRMM
Montpellier Laboratory of Informatics,
Robotics and Microelectronics
(UM/CNRS)
170 scientists, with about 10 involved in the topic
UMR MISTEA
Mathematics, Informatics and Statistics
for Environment and Agronomy
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
18 scientists, with 11 involved in the topic
UMT Ecotech-Viti
(IFV/IRSTEA/Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV)
6 scientists

Other teams focused
on this topic
Domaine du Chapitre Experimental Unit
(Montpellier SupAgro/INRA)
7 engineers and technicians
UMR SPO
Sciences for Enology
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro/UM)
45 scientists

Viticulture and Wine

Pech Rouge Experimental Unit
(INRA)
6 scientists, 30 engineers and technicians

48

UMR LEPSE
Ecophysiology of Plants Under
Environmental Stress
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
15 scientists, with 5 involved in the topic

information acquisition and its
use in life science, agriculture
and environmental applications.
The research findings have many
applications in viticulture—a
field in which the team has
developed substantial expertise
on instrumentation and field
experimentation.
UMR ITAP develops tools and
methods applied to all stages from
information acquisition to usage for
decision support, including:
 development of new
nondestructive sensors based
on spectral properties of the
environment (soil, fruit, leaves,
etc.): the Optical Sensors for
Complex Environments team
develops scientific and technical
benchmarks for characterizing
agroecosystems by fine tuning
optical sensors in hyperspectral
imagery and near-infrared
spectroscopy, and associated
processing methods. The team
has a state-of-the-art instrumental
optics laboratory.
 design of decision systems tailored
for sustainable agroenvironmental
processes: the Modelling for
Agroenvironmental Decisionmaking team develops scientific
and technical benchmarks for
designing decision-support system
tools to diagnose system conditions
and precision agriculture
approaches. The methods involve
fuzzy logic, discrete event systems
and geostatistics.
 development of methods and
tools to reduce pesticide use and
impacts on the environment and
on the health of operators and
inhabitants in the vicinity of treated
plots. The Processes-EnvironmentPesticides-Health team studies
spraying processes, from the spray
nozzle to pesticide transport, on

catchment and territory scales.
The team relies on the ReducPol
technological research platform,
which has unique experimental
expertise and facilities in France
devoted to studies on spraying
phenomena and pesticide transfers
in the environment.
The research unit has regular scientific
exchanges with several international
partners, including the Australian
Centre for Precision Agriculture, the
Universities of Sydney (Australia),
Talca (Chile), Lleida, Pamplona,
Madrid and Córdoba (Spain), etc.
The unit mainly conducts targeted
research in close collaboration with
various economic stakeholders,
including private companies—
startups, very small enterprises
(VSEs), SMEs, medium-sized
enterprises (MEs), large groups―
technical institutes on collaborative
projects (ARVALIS, CTIFL*, IFV, ITB)
or regional experimental stations
(CEHM)**.
In public policy support missions,
the unit conducts studies for
national agencies (ONEMA, ADEME,
ANSES***), the French Agriculture
and Environment Ministries and local
authorities.
* CTIFL: Centre technique interprofessionnel
des fruits et légumes (France)
**CEHM: Centre expérimental horticole
de Marsillargues (France)
***ONEMA: French National Agency
for Water and Aquatic Environments
ADEME: French Environment
and Energy Management Agency
ANSES: French Agency for Food, Environmental
and Occupational Health and Safety

p A drone photographing a vineyard
© G. Besqueut

AgroTIC Services – ICT specialists offering technical
expertise for wine companies
The digital world is constantly and rapidly changing. AgroTIC
Services is a technical unit devoted to meeting the growing support
and training needs of the wine sector regarding ICT issues. This
specialized unit—coordinated by Montpellier SupAgro and UMR
ITAP—was designed to serve as a clearly identified business partner
to address all issues regarding the use of these new technologies in
agriculture, especially in the wine sector.
Educational, support and monitoring activities carried out by
AgroTIC Services enable companies to set up projects linked
directly with teaching or research.

These activities are organized around four main foci:
 educational activities to strengthen links between education and
business
 continuing education for agricultural professionals
 seminars for research stakeholders, students, agricultural
businesses and ICTs
 individual business support on R&D projects in the agricultural
ICT field.
Contact:
Léo Pichon, leo.pichon@supagro.fr
For further information: www.agrotic.org/blog/agrotic-services

Development of new portable sensors
such as the Spectron™
VINNOTEC (2007-2012) was a major collaborative R&D project coordinated by UMR
ITAP, pooling driving forces of public and private research.

This project gave rise to a number of tools and services that are now (or about to be)
marketed, including sensors for vine and fermentation monitoring. The Spectron™—one
innovation proposed by the VINNOTEC project—is a portable sensor for monitoring
grape ripening. This tool is used to autonomously monitor grape ripening parameters
p Spectron™, a portable sensor for monitoring
(sugar content, acidity, anthocyanins, etc.) directly in vineyard plots. The sensor is based
grape ripening © Pellenc SA
on visible and near-infrared spectroscopy technology. It is the result of nearly 10 years of
collaborative research between UMR ITAP and the French company Pellenc SA.
The VINNOTEC project—certified by the Qualiméditerranée competitive cluster—was supported by the French government (Single
Interministerial Fund [FUI]), Languedoc-Roussillon Region, OSEO and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
Contact:
Alexia Gobrecht, alexia.gobrecht@irstea.fr
For further information: www.pellenc.com/agriculture/Spectrometre-Spectron.aspx

Vigne & Vin
Viticulture
and Wine

The project aimed to integrate ICTs in all steps of the vine-cropping and wineproduction process. ICTs ensure precise spatiotemporal information, real-time market
reactivity and the creation of new viticulture and wine knowledge bases. These
technologies facilitate the emergence of new products and services tailored for different
links in the production chain. New sensors are used to effectively characterize the state
of the vines, grapes and fermentations. This helps streamline the associated production
process via decision-support services.

49

Meeting digital challenges in the sector

Spatialization of viticulture data
Medium to high resolution spatial data are now widespread in the viticulture sector (GPS, onboard sensors, remote sensing, etc.). This
phenomenon has generated a demand for advanced spatial information display, handling and processing tools. Due to the technical, social and
economic features of the sector, it is essential to develop specific methods in order to provide the wine industry with easy to use, sturdy
and inexpensive (or even free) tools that are tailored to specific trade needs. The following examples illustrate recent advances in this field.

Optimizing spatial sampling
Spatial sampling—in an experimental or operational setting
—is necessary to characterize the status of a vineyard plot at
a given date. It is essential to carefully plan the sample number
and positions in order to achieve quality estimates. High spatial
resolution data (remote-sensing) helps determine the spatial
variability of the studied area and thus to optimize the position
and number of measurements to carry out. Research conducted by
UMR ITAP aims to produce generic spatial sampling methods that
are optimized and specifically tailored to viticulture parameters
such as yield estimation using vegetation maps obtained by remote
sensing imagery (UAV, airborne devices, satellite).

Optimizing selective grape harvesting routes
Research studies are focused on complex optimization problems
with specific applications to vineyards and wine cellars (LIRMM,
ITAP and MISTEA collaboration). By integrating spatial data, these
constraint programming methods address major logistical and
organizational issues, like those regarding selective grape harvesting.
This involves separately harvesting two qualities of grapes on the
same plot with a two-hopper mechanical grape harvester. The
location of quality grape zones and the estimated quantities to
harvest are known. The problem is to optimize the route of the
harvester in the vine plot, while addressing many constraints
—consideration of the row harvesting direction, harvester storage
capacity, etc.

 A drone photo of a vineyard
© G. Besqueut/UMR ITAP

Mapping the water status in vineyards
Monitoring the vine water status on a plot, vineyard or territorial
scale is essential to help wine growers make decisions with regard
to managing the quantity and quality of the end product. Since
2010, UMR ITAP, with UE Pech Rouge and IFV, has been developing
empirical models to extrapolate, spatialize and map the vineyard
water status. The original aspect of the approach is that it makes
effective use of point data acquired during operational monitoring
of the vine water status. An innovative participative production
approach (crowdsourcing) could be used with this method. Growers
could thus share, consolidate and enhance a spatiotemporal
database focused on monitoring the vine water status on a
territorial scale. This would enable dynamic learning of a spatial
model that is perfected gradually as the database is enhanced.

 Extrapolation of a benchmark water status measurement
(reference measurement site) at a given date and at the
cooperative area scale
Interpolated map plotted on the basis of historical reference data—estimation
quality at measuring stations not used for model learning (0.10 Mpa).
© UMR ITAP

Viticulture and Wine

GeoFIS project

50

Agropolis teams specialized on the development of operational
methods have designed the free open source software platform
GeoFIS to facilitate transfer of their research results. This simple
scalable toolbox offers the possibility of adding new spatial data
processing functions. GeoFIS is designed for quick transfer—through
a simple interface—of innovative methods that can be implemented
by professionals or students for specific applications. The functions
developed in the framework of the GeoFIS project could be
incorporated as plugins in GIS software.
Contact:
Bruno Tisseyre, bruno.tisseyre@supagro.fr
For further information on GeoFIS: https://prezi.com/8f4gifhshycl/geofis

Constraint programming
and learning
The joint research unit Montpellier
Laboratory of Informatics, Robotics
and Microelectronics (UMR
LIRMM – UM, CNRS) includes three
departments: Informatics, Robotics
and Microelectronics.
The Informatics department involves
14 project teams spanning a broad
spectrum of informatics research,
ranging from theoretical informatics
to applications and interfaces
with many other disciplines. The
applications concern genomics,
molecular and cellular biology,
medicine, agronomy, biodiversity
preservation, oenology and precision
viticulture, etc.

Within the Informatics department,
the COCONUT (Constraints,
Learning, Agents) team is part of
the Artificial Intelligence research
platform, which proposes and studies
artificial intelligence models and
algorithms. This team focuses on
problems arising through the use of
technologies derived from constraint
programming and learning, with a
marked theoretical foundation and
algorithm component. It deals with
constrained optimization problems,
especially numerical optimization,
and standard learning or data mining
issues with a constraint-based
approach.

In the viticulture and wine field,
several prototypes have been
developed in collaboration with
UMR ITAP and UMR MISTEA, and
with the companies Nyseos and
Fruition. These initiatives deal
with various issues: optimization
in selective harvesting of the route
of a two-hopper grape harvester;
optimization of the schedule and
route of technicians for monitoring
water stress in 200 vineyards; and
optimization of the blending of
several wines while taking volume
and aroma profiles into account.

SILEX project
A promising information
system for viticulture and
wine experimentation
Since 2010, the collaborative Information System for
Experimentation (SILEX) project, coordinated by UMR MISTEA,
has been proposing information systems tailored to meet new
data-related challenges for scientists and researchers. SILEX has led
to the creation of several production information systems focused
on viticulture and winemaking (UMR SPO, UMR SYSTEM, Pech
Rouge UE).

An annotation app for tablets and mobile phones is provided to
improve the traceability. From a greenhouse, cellar or field, an
operator can thus annotate entities identified by QR codes and
declare a fallen pot or disease signs observed in a grapevine row.
This can be associated with videos, audio recordings, photos or
handwritten notes, and fermentation curves are enhanced by these
annotations. Implicit or lacking events are also taken into account
through business rules and reasoning. The knowledge produced
can be exploited via statistical analysis treatments, and especially
automatic data validation.
SILEX enables users to specify operations and products (grapes,
must, etc.) in a production process. It visualizes this process while
including associated data and analytical results, applied treatments,
events, etc.

 Screenshots of Vadrouyes. A web application for the
declaration and consultation of vinification (a) and
viticultural (b) practices © UMR MISTEA

SILEX is widely used for bioprocesses (UR Laboratory of
Environmental Biotechnology) and high throughput phenotyping of
plants (UMR LEPSE). In this field, SILEX will equip nine platforms of
the French national PHENOME project (see p. 55), ranging from the
plot to the gene scale.
Contacts:
Anne Tireau, anne.tireau@supagro.inra.fr
Pascal Neveu, pascal.neveu@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/mistea_eng/Projects/
Silex

Viticulture and Wine

SILEX can manage and temporally monitor entities such as plots,
microplots, vines, organs, etc. Knowledge engineering and innovative
semantic web technologies are used for this task. Domain-specific
ontologies enable vocabulary control, event or transaction
annotation, reasoning and data sharing, etc.

51

Meeting digital challenges in the sector

Experimental agricultural
data – from organization
to prediction and decision
support

data organization to prediction and
decision support. The viticulture and
wine sector is a prime focus of the
unit’s research.

The joint research unit Mathematics,
Informatics and Statistics for
Environment and Agronomy
(UMR MISTEA - INRA, Montpellier
SupAgro) develops methodological
mathematics and informatics tools
for agricultural and environmental
science applications. This unit pools
researchers from the INRA Applied
Mathematics and Informatics
Division and the Montpellier SupAgro
Department of Sciences for Agro-BioProcesses.

The unit proposes an original
semantic graph based approach to
collect and organize multiscale data
from mixed sources. Ontologies*
enable the formalization of
knowledge to facilitate sharing
between different groups and the
use of this information in automated
reasoning. A large-scale study
carried out recently with the Pech
Rouge research unit resulted in
the development and correlation
of ontologies regarding viticulture
and winemaking. Automatic data
validation and preprocessing
methods make it possible to combine
expert information and statistical
methods. An emerging prediction and
decision-support challenge concerns
the comparison of plant or fruit
evolutionary data to a high number
of cofactors, such as genetic or
environmental information. MISTEA
is developing advanced methods that
combine curve analysis (functional
statistics), high-dimensional statistics
(variable selection), multiscale

Viticulture and Wine

MISTEA proposes innovative
solutions to meet current challenges
regarding the integration of
experimental agronomic datasets
that are increasingly large,
heterogeneous and acquired at
different scales. Synergies generated
by the presence of computer
scientists and statisticians with a
broad range of expertise in data
management, analysis and modelling
enable the unit to implement an
integrated approach ranging from

p A chain-based approach

52

© MISTEA

integration (hierarchical models) and
classification (clustering).
The research unit is involved with
public and private partners in
different projects in the sector: the
‘Long-term adaptation to climate
change in viticulture and enology’
programme (LACCAVE, see p. 58),
the ‘Development of a decisionsupport tool to enhance the
competitiveness of wines for export’
project (PILOTYPE, 2010-2014)
coordinated by a consortium of major
stakeholders in the sector, and the
‘Data integration and expertise for a
new generation of viticulture tools’
project (IDENOV, see next page),
winner of the Global Innovation
Competition in July 2014.
*A computer model representative of a set of concepts
within a domain and logical relations between them.

IDENOV project
Data integration and
expertise for a new
generation of viticulture
tools

 Flow capture device

© S. Payen/Fruition Sciences

The IDENOV project is coordinated by Fruition Sciences—a service company
that provides wine growers with an integrative, terroir and vintage-specific, datadriven web application. The project is geared towards the integration of ‘data
science’ innovations in the wine sector. It makes effective use of a highly diverse
range of data from sensors placed in vineyards (sap flow and temperature
sensors, etc.), associated with field expertise. Three partners are collaborating
to achieve the objectives: Fruition Sciences, UMR MISTEA and Global Vision (a
service support company implementing the open innovation strategy).

Climate data

The project—through the development of a method tailored for the analysis of
complex data—led to the development of a first prediction tool based on data
collected in vineyards over several years.
The method combines multidimensional exploratory analysis techniques
extended to temporal data and high-dimensional statistical methods that
enable the construction of interpretable parsimonious models by estimating
a limited number of parameters. This approach facilitates the discovery of
periods and factors that have the greatest impact on grape quality (measured by
physicochemical analysis) while building the founding elements of an automated
decision support tool.
In the era of the digital revolution, and the massive influx of heterogeneous
multisource data, this project is emblematic of the methodological advances
achieved. The latter are geared towards tapping all of these data to build a new
generation of tools for the viticulture and wine sector. The project was the
winner of phase 1 of the Global Innovation Competition in 2014*, in the Big
Data challenge.

Plant data

* www.entreprises.gouv.fr/innovation-2030/accueil-innovation-2030

Contacts:
Nadine Hilgert, hilgert@supagro.inra.fr
Sébastien Payen, sebastien@fruitionsciences.com
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/mistea/Projets/IDENOV

 Irrigated vines

© S. Payen/Fruition Sciences

 Correlating heterogeneous data at different
temporal scales: weather data (sunlight, rainfall,
etc.), vine water status, grape quality

Viticulture and Wine

Fruit data

© S. Payen/Fruition Sciences

53

Meeting digital challenges in the sector

SOFA – oenological alcoholic fermentation simulation software
The SOFA software package—available in English, French, Italian and
Spanish—is the result of a several year collaboration between the
MISTEA and SPO joint research units. This collaboration resulted in
the development of a physiological model of alcoholic fermentation.
The model was validated with real data on several dozens of
fermentations conducted in different conditions (sugar and nitrogen
contents, temperature). The software is marketed by the company
INTELLI’OENO.
SOFA can predict the course of alcoholic fermentations
(fermentation rate, time, sugar consumption, released energy,
etc.) on the basis of a few initial key data, such as grape must
analytical parameters (sugar and assimilable nitrogen contents) and
fermentation conditions (temperature profile, nitrogen nutrient
supplementation, fermentation onset date, tank volume).

interdisciplinary approach in which mathematicians, microbiologists
and computer scientists interacted in the research and came up
with an operational solution. MOMAF (for ‘modelling of the main
reaction of alcoholic fermentation’) is a very recent SOFA software
extension that can simulate the kinetics of higher alcohols and
esters.
Contacts :
Nadine Hilgert, hilgert@supagro.inra.fr
Jean-Roch Mouret, mouretj@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www.intellioeno.com

SOFA is a two-part software package:
 SOFA 1 enables detailed prediction and viewing of the effects of
key parameters (e.g. temperature, nitrogen content or nitrogen
nutrient supplementation) on the course of alcoholic fermentation.
 SOFA 2 enables optimization of instantaneous and total frigorie
requirements during the vinification process, as well as the tank
occupancy (by adjusting the fermentation time).
SOFA is a pioneering example of modelling complex systems
through a combination of data and knowledge related to the main
physiological mechanisms of yeast and formalized by differential
equations. The knowledge model is supplemented with many
experimental data and the variables are dissociated so as to be able
to identify the model parameters. SOFA illustrates the success of an

© B. Charnomordic

Viticulture and Wine

p SOFA software interface

54
© F. Pruneau

p u Tablet annotation of observations and events
during vine experiments on the vine phenotyping
platform in the field
© A.Tireau/MISTEA

PHENOME – the French plant
phenotyping network

All of the platforms are equipped with a complete set of
functional 3D imaging techniques, for: detailed imaging of roots
and shoots under controlled conditions, canopy imaging with
an autonomous phénomobile, which captures functional 3D
images of individual plots, and drones which capture images of
hundreds of plots together. Two omic platforms also centralize
metabolomic and structural measurements associated with
experiments.

Two methodological projects coordinated by UMR MISTEA
develop infrastructure for methods and techniques capable of:
(1) organizing data from different platforms so that they can
be stored and analysed over a long period by a broad ranging
scientific community, and (2) designing and disseminating—to
the academic community and industry—a new set of methods
for data analysis and the extraction of genotypic traits (data
annotation and validation, modelling, links with plant and crop
models).
PHENOME has already led to the creation of phenotyping and
precision agriculture SMEs (including one spin-off and several
patents). It is incorporated in European and international
phenotyping projects (European Plant Phenotyping Network,
International Plant Phenotyping Network, European roadmap).
Contact:
Nadine Hilgert, hilgert@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: http://www.phenome-fppn.fr/phenome_eng

Viticulture and Wine

PHENOME (2012-2019) is a French National Biology and
Health Infrastructure of the Investments for the Future
programme. It aims to provide the French plant research
community with a network of high-throughput phenotyping
platforms (see p. 12), to facilitate characterization of the
responses of genotype collections of different species to
various environmental scenarios (associated with climate
change)—many experiments have already been undertaken
on grapevine. The infrastructure consists of: (1) two platforms
under controlled conditions, (2) two field platforms under
semi-controlled environmental conditions, and (3) three field
platforms under non-controlled conditions.

55

u Banyuls vineyard,
Pyrénées-Orientales
region, France

Viticulture and Wine

© C. Maitre/INRA

56

Interdisciplinary programmes
to address challenges
in the viticulture and wine sector

A

dapting to climate change, reducing pesticide
use to preserve health and environment,
improving wine quality to meet changing
market needs are major issues upon which
Agropolis viticulture and wine research is focused.
Research teams are addressing these issues by focusing
on specific questions concerning individual scientific
disciplines (see previous chapters), while also consistently
incorporating its expertise in more globally oriented
approaches. The latter combine different levels of analysis,
often ranging from grape genes to wine consumption,
while taking different types of initiatives that economic
stakeholders could implement in the short, medium or
long term into account.

possible for adaptation—breeding drought resistant
varieties, yeasts or technology to reduce the alcohol
content, new water-efficient management strategies,
precision irrigation with waste water, etc.

Interdisciplinary programmes are developing to cope with
these issues, combining genetics, agronomy, oenology,
economics, sociology, etc. These disciplines are combined
to gain further insight into biological, technical and
socioeconomic processes so as to improve wine quality,
adapt to climate change or reduce pesticide use within
a vineyard or sector. Interdisciplinarity is also favoured
to develop new assessment methods, simulation tools
or foresight studies, as illustrated by operations carried
out in collaboration with IHEV and France AgriMer on
low-alcohol wines and in the adaptation of vineyards to
climate change for 2050. Finally, interdisciplinarity has
become necessary to generate expertise and support for
innovations that must be designed and developed while
taking the context of their implementation into account.

Finally, new technical pathways are being explored to
come up with innovations to enhance the quality and
diversification of viticulture and wine products. These
techniques could improve the quality of existing wines
or broaden the product range through better vinification
control associated upstream, for instance, with grape
quality management via irrigation. The sector could,
however, also be diversified beyond winemaking through
the production of new grape juices or biomaterials.
Researchers are thus generating a more comprehensive
view of the potential future of viticulture by, for instance,
promoting quality of terroir wines, but also by investigating
new products that could be attractive to consumers.

Low pesticide and sustainable viticulture approaches also
involve research on new grape varieties, particularly those
resistant to mildew and powdery mildew. However, such
varietal options are only of interest if accompanied by
research on agricultural practices, soil management, or
decision-support to enhance phytosanitary intervention
management, etc. Such operations combine the
assessment of cropping practices with new tools for
monitoring the status of grapevines and their ecosystem.

Jean-Marc Touzard (UMR Innovation)

Viticulture and Wine

This chapter illustrates this more cross-cutting and
interdisciplinary type of research that is organized to
address major challenges in the sector, often in association
with economic partners wishing to innovate or anticipate
potential changes. Climate change adaptation is also
generally dealt with as part of the national LACCAVE
project (see p. 58), which brings together many
Montpellier-based researchers. In addition, complementary
projects help specify the different combined innovations

57

Interdisciplinary programmes to address challenges in the viticulture and wine sector

Adaptation to climate change
Climate change has many impacts on vines and wine, which may
be beneficial or not depending on the region, e.g. advanced harvest
dates, greater water stress, wines that are more alcoholic, less acidic
or with new flavour profiles. These impacts are bound to increase
and potentially affect the competitiveness of vineyards and their
geographical distribution.
The LACCAVE project (2012-2016) is studying the impacts of
climate change on vines and wine and possible adaptation strategies
for French wine regions. Twenty-three research laboratories have
combined their expertise in different disciplines (climatology,
genetics, ecophysiology, agronomy, oenology, economics and
sociology), including 11 research units of INRA Montpellier, along
with UMR Innovation.

Scientists working on the LACCAVE project are also conducting
foresight studies for 2050. Four scenarios have been proposed to
fuel the debate and identify potential strategies: a ‘conservative’
scenario that only incorporates marginal changes; an ‘innovation to
stay’ scenario which paves the way for a broad range of innovations
on all vineyards; a ‘nomadic vineyard’ scenario which highlights
vineyard relocation possibilities; and a ‘liberal’ scenario which tests
‘everything is possible everywhere’ situations.
Contact:
Jean-Marc Touzard, touzard@montpellier.inra.fr
For further information: www1.montpellier.inra.fr/laccave

The project has developed a systemic view of wine technical and
value chains so as to be able to analyse climate change impacts and
the diversity of potential adaptation levers. This analysis is conducted
at several scales (plant, plot, farm, regional wine growing area and
sector), while focusing especially on local levels where adaptation
strategies can be coordinated.
Studies are focused on the physiological and genetic basis of vine
responses to climate change parameters (temperature, water),
technical innovations that could contribute to adaptation (new
varieties, vineyard management, irrigation and oenological practices),
choices of vine locations and effects on the landscape, costs and
benefits for growers, and consumer views on ‘climate-change wines’.
 LACCAVE project researchers in the field at Banyuls-sur-Mer
(France) © E. Delay

Selection of varieties and clones adapted to global warming
The global warming trend in recent years has led to earlier and earlier grape
harvests and the production of wines with a relatively high alcohol content. Public
health preservation measures and changing consumer tastes have prompted research
on more supple and easy to drink wines with a reduced alcohol content.

Viticulture and Wine

The aim of this research is to select varieties—local, foreign or de novo—and clones
that could be harvested later or that would naturally accumulate less sugar and
tolerate acute water stress conditions. To this end, studies carried out by Sélection
Vigne partners are aimed at setting up a network of experimental plots, and
ultimately registering new varieties in the official French national catalogue, while
obtaining approval for new clones in the coming years.
Most of the recently registered varieties are from the Mediterranean Basin. Around
15 foreign wine grape varieties that are especially promising from quality and
agricultural standpoints have been selected since 2010 on the basis of aroma, alcohol
content, acidity, colour, polyphenol content, dry soil adaptation, structure, hot climate
adaptation and lateness features. A complete list of these varieties and detailed
characteristics of each one are available on the ‘Catalogue of Vine Varieties and
Clones Grown in France’ website*.
Contact:
Christophe Sereno, christophe.sereno@vignevin.com
* For further information: http://plantgrape.plantnet-project.org

58

p Cluster of cv Verdelho B grapes
© INRA/IFV/Montpellier SupAgro

Dealcoholization and acidification – the contribution
of post-vinification membrane technologies
Climate change induced modifications in wine quality trigger an
increase in alcohol content and pH.
Lowering the wine alcohol content has been experimentally studied
by INRA, UE Pech Rouge in partnership with the company Pernod
Ricard, the Fédération nationale des vins de pays, UMR SPO, IFV and
the company OENODIA (‘Low Alcohol Quality Wines’ programme,
with ANR 2006-2009 funding). In a combined membrane process,
the first dealcoholization step (reverse osmosis or nanofiltration)
separates wine constituents by removing ethanol in hydroalcoholic
permeate form. The second step, using a membrane contactor,
partially extracts the permeate ethanol fraction according to the
osmotic evaporation principle using water as solvent, with the pores
of the used membrane being air-filled (hydrophobic material). Both
steps are conducted in a continuous cycle, with the permeates being
dealcoholized gradually as they are produced and gradually fed back
into the wine during processing. A reasonable dealcoholization limit
of -3% (vol) is set for the combined membrane process. Partial 20%
dealcoholization relative to the initial alcohol content is recognized
by the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) and now
approved by the European Community.

p A mobile OENODIA-GEMSAB unit

© Oenodia

The high pH of musts and wines has prompted oenologists
to look for technical ways to acidify wines. High pH is mainly
due to the presence of excess potassium. On an electrodialysis
apparatus, potassium is specifically extracted through a cationic
membrane, with displacement of acid-base balances of organic salts
achieved through a bipolar membrane, which induces continuous
and controlled wine acidification through pH measurement. This
treatment can be carried out on centrifuged must, centrifuged wine,
wine carefully racked after the end of fermentation or prefiltered
at 25 µm. The electromembrane process for must and wine
acidification was recognized as an oenology practice by OIV in 2010,
and authorized by EU in 2011. The company GEMSTAB provides
an acidification correction service in Languedoc-Roussillon region
(France).
Contact:
Jean-Louis Escudier, escudier@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www.montpellier.inra.fr/pechrouge / www6.inra.
fr/ciag/CIAg-Agriculture/Viticulture-et-stress-hydrique

 Wines dealcoholized by combined membrane
techniques – the 10% Pech Rouge range of wines
© INRA

Selection of low alcohol yielding yeasts
Overcoming the increase in alcohol content in wines is a major challenge for the wine sector. This
rising trend, associated with changes in oenological and viticultural practices and exacerbated by global
warming, has been noted in most wine producing countries over the last 20 years. Excess alcohol can be
detrimental to the sensory quality of wine, problematic for successful fermentation, while reducing the
market competitiveness of wines because of the higher taxes based on alcohol content levied in some
countries. Moreover, a reduction in wine acidity also often accompanies these changes.

This research, carried out in partnership with the company Lallemand, led to the selection of a yeast
that is an effective tool for managing the alcohol/acidity balance in wines, thus addressing issues currently
impacting wine producing countries in hot regions.
Contact:
Sylvie Dequin, dequin@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/spo_eng

p Germination of Saccharomyces
cerevisiae yeast spores (electron
microscopy)
© J.-M. Salmon / INRA

Viticulture and Wine

UMR SPO has been conducting research for more than 20 years with the aim of developing
Saccharomyces cerevisiae wine yeast strains that produce less alcohol. This involves redirecting the yeast
metabolism towards other by-products, without accumulating unwanted metabolites, while preserving the
performances of the strain. This represents a major scientific challenge. Studies recently carried out by
the research unit have been based on the development of an adaptive evolution strategy combined with a
hybridization approach in order to redirect sugars towards glycerol production at the expense of ethanol.
It was possible—by maintaining a wine yeast in extended culture in potassium chloride laced medium—to
select an evolved strain having a sugar metabolism partially diverted towards glycerol, 2,3-butanediol and
succinic acid. In tests conducted at different scales (laboratory, pilot, cellar), it was found that wines made
with this yeast had a 0.5-1.3% (v/v) lower alcohol content, low volatile acidity and high total acidity.

59

Interdisciplinary programmes to address challenges in the viticulture and wine sector

Recycled treated water for vineyard irrigation
The Irri-Alt’Eau project
The Irri-Alt’Eau R&D programme—designed to provide quantityand quality-controlled water resources from an alternative source
for vineyard irrigation—aims to highlight the feasibility of a new
vineyard microirrigation practice using recycled treated water from
urban water purification plants that would otherwise be discharged
into the environment via the sea or canals. The research part of this
project combines, over a water-soil-plant-grape-wine continuum,
two INRA research units—LBE* (Narbonne) and UEPR—and Veolia
Environnement, Veolia Eau région Méditerranée (project coordinator),
the company Aquadoc (irrigation system specialist), the Cave
coopérative de Gruissan and La Grand Narbonne, owner of the
Gruissan and Narbonne Plage water purification plants.
Urban and agricultural water tapped from the Lastours Canal is
used to irrigate grapevine control rows in two cv Viognier and
Carignan vineyard plots. The project is being implemented at
several scales, from experimental plots—1.5 ha (UEPR site), 10-30
ha (Cave coopérative de Gruissan)—to the Gruissan vineyards (150200 ha planned) and several other French wine-producing regions
(Languedoc-Roussillon and Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur), with go/no
go decisions made at each stage.

During the initial experimental stage, the quality of the recycled,
prefiltered and UV-treated water is constantly controlled.
Compared with drinking and agricultural water, this recycled water
has higher salt and nutrient (nitrogen and phosphorus) contents.
Supplementary fertilization could thus be substantially reduced in
the medium- to long-term depending on the supplied water volume.
The microbiological quality of the water is controlled by combined
UV/chlorine treatments.
Through this project, the town of Gruissan will have alternative
source of local water to irrigate grapevines and other crops, as is
already done in other countries (Australia, Spain, USA, etc.).
This research programme (2013-2016) has been granted a
prefectoral authorization (2013 191 0007 of 11 July 2013). It has
been accredited by the French Water Cluster (Pôle Eau), supported
by Transferts-LR and it benefits from public funding (European
Agricultural Fund for Rural Development, La Grand Narbonne, Rhône
Méditerranée Corse Water Agency, Languedoc-Roussillon Region,
Regional Innovation Fund [FRI]).
*Laboratory of Environmental Biotechnology (INRA)

Contacts:
Jean-Louis Escudier, escudier@supagro.inra.fr
Hernan Ojeda, hernan.ojeda@supagro.inra.fr

Managing wine quality in vineyards
Continuous adaptation of grape cropping techniques in
Mediterranean vineyards is essential to deal with climate change
and the current wine crisis. This situation has paved the way to the
development of new coping concepts such as irrigation, breeding
of new grape varieties, development of new vineyard management
systems, diversification and the use of sensors. Wine growers are
increasingly faced with a trade-off of having to accept the impacts of
severe water shortages or irrigate to overcome serious problems
resulting from decreased crop yields and harvest quality.

Viticulture and Wine

Recent scientific advances have made it possible to propose wine
growers sustainable irrigation models based on control of the water
status—the key element determining the physiological function of
grapevines relative to production goals. This approach addresses a
tangible demand coming from most of the European wine sector.
These vineyard water status control models, developed by UE
Pech Rouge, generate information on the effects of water stress
(depending on the extent) on grape and wine yield and quality, and
on optimal thresholds for grapevines according to the phenological
stage. Commercial vineyard irrigation strategies can be managed on
this basis according to targets, while being tailored to the specific
features of each terroir.

60

In areas where irrigation is not crucial (most European vineyards),
the water status is controlled to a limited extent via tillage and
vineyard management. In such cases, the vineyard water status
(available soil water) is a major factor in explaining the terroir
variability concept. In areas with low rainfall and where irrigation is
therefore essential for vine crops, in areas with heavy droughts, as is
the case in most ‘New World’ wine producing countries, or in areas
with occasional heavy droughts, it is important to have a precise
idea of the responses of grapevines to the water status so as to be
able to choose the best irrigation strategies to adopt according to
the production targets.
Contact:
Hernan Ojeda, hernan.ojeda@supagro.inra.fr

 Methods, tools and strategies to maximize the grape harvest
quality and yield while saving water
© From Ojeda H., Saurin N. 2014. Innovations Agronomiques 38/97-108

p Programme stakeholders visiting an irrigated vineyard plot

p Drip irrigation

© F. Etchebarne/INRA

© Aquadoc

Vineyard irrigation management support
The water use issue in vineyards is becoming highly critical since soil evaporation and plant
transpiration are increasing with climate change. Irrigation is thus being used to a greater
extent and the limits imposed by regulations are rapidly changing. However, due to the
negative impacts of excessive irrigation on production and to the growing competition with
industrial and domestic water uses, it is essential to gain further insight into the optimum
required to meet harvest goals in terms of both quantity and quality.

*UMR Functional Ecology & Bio-geochemistry of Soils and Agro-ecosystems (INRA, IRD, Montpellier SupAgro, CIRAD)

Contact:
Éric Lebon, lebon@supagro.inra.fr

p Monitoring the vineyard water status by measuring
the leaf water potential and stem water potential
These measurements are obtained in a pressure chamber.
© INRA/LEPSE

p Graphic interface of the ITK-Vigne irrigation management tool
© INRA/LEPSE

p Measuring the
transpiration flux of
a vine plant using a
sap flow sensor
This type of sensor is used
to acquire experimental
data that can be used to
test simulation model
performance. (a) setting
up the sensor (b) installed
sensor.
© INRA/LEPSE

Viticulture and Wine

The joint research unit LEPSE, associated with other Agropolis research teams (UMR
Eco&Sols*) and a private partner (ITK company), have contributed to the development of a
software tool to assess daily water consumption in vineyards and the soil water status. One
difficulty was to estimate the quantity of water accessible to roots in often complex soils
and tapped by roots remotely located from the vine stump. By combining soil characteristics,
climatic conditions, direct observations of soil root development and physiological
measurements obtained at key stages of vine plant development, a mathematical model was
built to predict the soil water status during the vine growth cycle. The model gave rise to a
software package that can be used to determine potential irrigation water quantities required
according to a climate scenario and production goals.

61

Interdisciplinary programmes to address challenges in the viticulture and wine sector

Sustainable vitiviniculture
Wine cropping systems with low pesticide inputs
DEPHY—a network for demonstration, experimentation and the
production of references on low pesticide cropping systems—is a
major initiative of the French Plan Écophyto. This network aims to
develop, pool and disseminate examples of cropping systems that
markedly reduce pesticide use. Low pesticide input and economically
efficient cropping systems (SCEP) have thus been identified. In this
framework, the SCEP-DEPHY project proposes to use databases
created by network engineers (mainly chambers of agriculture) that
manage the DEPHY national demonstration farm network.
This database describes wine cropping systems in various French
regions. The project aims to extract knowledge on low pesticide
cropping systems. The plan to achieve this includes: (1) characterizing
and identifying cropping systems that are economic, with respect to
pesticide inputs, while also performing well (grape yields and quality),
called E&P, (2) identifying combinations of factors that promote the
E&P features of wine producing systems (geography, soils, types of
wines produced, etc.), and (3) conducting multicriteria assessments,

while incorporating other aspects regarding the sustainability of
these cropping systems (via various tools such as lifecycle analysis,
DXiPM or INDIGO models).
This project is focused on field crops, arboriculture, viticulture and
vegetable crops. The ‘viticulture’ component is coordinated by UMRs
Innovation and SYSTEM. It involves collaboration with experts in
the concerned sectors, multicriteria assessment specialists and
agricultural statisticians.
The SCEP-DEPHY project, coordinated by UMR Agroecology (INRA
Dijon), is the result of the research proposal call ‘For and on the
Plan Ecophyto 2018’, following the 2012 proposal ‘For and on three
components of the Plan: epidemiological surveillance, DEPHY farm
networks and assessment indicators’.
Contacts:
Jean-Marc Barbier, barbierj@supagro.inra.fr
Christian Gary, gary@supagro.inra.fr

Improved management of pest control interventions – from decision
making to controlled treatments
Mildium©: an operational decision-making process for
fungicide treatments

The National Research Institute of Science and Technology for
Environment and Agriculture (IRSTEA) has cooperated with
INRA Bordeaux pathologists to model a viticulture fungicide
crop protection decision-making process called Mildium©. The
‘decision-making process’ refers to decisions to make according to
temporal dynamics, such as vine growth, meteorological patterns
and associated bioclimatic risk indices. The Mildium© process,
which concerns mildew and powdery mildew affecting grapevines,
involves field observations at specific stages. It has been tested, in
partnership, on many plots in Atlantic coastal, southern and northern
regions of France. Published results show, on the plot scale, the
possibilities of reducing the treatment frequency index by 30-50%.
Mildium© is also designed to promote apprenticeship, which enables
the treatment strategy to be tailored to specific farm objectives and
production conditions.

Innovative tools for characterizing and optimizing
pesticide spraying

IRSTEA (UMR ITAP) has developed, as part of the LIFE AWARE
(2005-2009) and TICSAD (2006-2010)* projects, a system for
displaying, recording and achieving the traceability of pesticide
treatment parameters. This provides farmers with a tool to help
them manage and optimize crop protection treatments (up to
15% reduction). They can monitor spraying operations in real time,
while saving time and enhancing precision during the preparation
and treatment phases. This project led to the development of the
PICORE system, which has been promoted by the company SIKA
GmbH and was presented at SITEVI 2015. This system uses ICT
technologies (GSM mobile phones and WiFi) to convey automatic
instructions and specifications for plots via a webserver, a portable
measuring device and a smartphone HMI display. In the future, a
portable light detection and ranging (LIDAR) laser remote sensing
system could be used to characterize vegetation studied at IRSTEA
(UMT ECOTECH-VITI) so as to be able to tailor pesticide dosages
to the vegetative stages of the crop.
* LIFE AWARE project: Reducing pesticide-related water pollution by
improving crop protection practices: the use of embedded ICT technologies.
TICSAD project: ICTs for sustainable agriculture.

Viticulture
Viticulture and
and Wine
Wine

Contacts :
Olivier Naud, olivier.naud@irstea.fr
Vincent de Rudnicki, vincent.derudnicki@irstea.fr

62

p PICORE system

© IRSTEA/SIKA GmbH, 2015

Panoramix project – can wine growers adopt pathogen-resistant
grapevine varieties?
The Panoramix project involves INRA laboratories in Bordeaux,
Paris, Colmar and Montpellier, focused on studying the genetic,
biological, agricultural and socioeconomic conditions regarding the
development of disease-resistant grapevine varieties. In Montpellier,
UMR Innovation conducted (in Languedoc-Roussillon region) an
in-depth sociological study on the conditions of appropriation of
conventional European hybridized mildew and powdery Vitis vinifera
varieties and American or Asian wild varieties bearing monogenic or
polygenic resistance. The social trajectory regarding the innovation
of these resistant varieties was characterized via interviews
with stakeholders (researchers, engineers, experimenter wine
growers, etc.), by explaining the current scientific or professional
controversies, but also by identifying the potential and specific
requirements for adoption by the wine sector.
Wine growers have high expectations because of growing concerns
on pesticide treatments, but there are still few guarantees for
the development of resistant vine varieties due to the lack of
subsidies, the need for further information and advice, a facilitated

administrative framework, more complete assessment of the
qualities and commercial prospects, etc. Studies aimed at facilitating
the dissemination and appropriation of resistant varieties have
identified facilitating political, economic, support and communication
conditions.
The development scenarios will necessarily be progressive. Resistant
vine varieties must be tailored to the needs of a range of wine
growers and could be the focus of complementary production
and marketing strategies. Research is under way to strengthen the
resistance and qualitative profiles of varieties, but it is essential
to establish an enabling environment to ensure wider innovation
adoption.
Contact:
Jean-Marc Barbier, barbierj@montpellier.inra.fr
For further information: www.montpellier.inra.fr/pechrouge
www6.inra.fr/ciag/CIAg-Agriculture/Viticulture-et-stress-hydrique

Assessment of a soil conservation strategy for viticulture landscapes
Soil degradation is largely due to inappropriate land-use and
cultivation practices, and this situation is likely to worsen in the
future due to rapid changes in Mediterranean vineyard landscapes
(climate, anthropogenic and socioeconomic changes). These changes
will ultimately lead to changes in land-use patterns and practices
prompted by farmers and decision makers as an adaptation strategy.
The aim of this study—carried out by UMR LISAH in collaboration
with other French laboratories in the framework of the ANR
LandSoil project—was to compare the effects of different landscape
change scenarios (land use and spatial patterns) on the evolution of
soil resources. The final objective was to contribute to developing
good soil and vineyard landscape management practices. The
LandSoil digital model was thus created and used for foresight
simulations (see figure below). Degradation involving soil loss via
different erosion processes (water and tillage) was taken into
account.

In a Mediterranean wine growing setting, the analysis of overall
results for a 100-year period highlighted that inappropriate land
use led to higher soil loss than noted with supposedly intensive
vineyard spatial patterns (large plots, rows oriented according to
the greatest slope, etc.), and 12-fold greater than simulated in a
stationary scenario (no changes in conditions as compared to the
current situation). The land degradation potential is higher than the
conservation potential under these conditions. The analysis of land
redistribution due to erosion confirmed the importance of land use
in managing erosion processes and reaffirmed the importance of
landscape structuring (plot spatial patterns), which promotes or not
the storage of volumes of eroded soil on slopes.
The development of soil conservation strategies should thus focus
on land use and practices that reduce land susceptibility to erosion
so as to ensure effective soil conservation. When this lever is not
possible, another key alternative lever is to spatially restructure the
landscape to promote the storage of volumes of eroded soil on
slopes.
Contact :
Stéphane Follain, follain@supagro.fr

Input

Events

Topographical area (t0)
(MNT 2-m)

For further information: http://www7.inra.fr/landsoil_eng

LandSoil
Water erosion
STREAM (Cerdan et al., 2002)
Production function
Water and sediments
(Expert rules Le Bissonais et al.,
1998, 2005)

Soil - (t0)
(Thickness)
Monthly

Agricultural practices
(Land use, rotations, type of work,
surface features)
Annual

Landscape geometry
(Plots and constructed landscape
elements)

Transfer function (Topographical
control and hydrosedimentary
connectivity)
Tillage erosion
WaTEM/SEDEM (Govers et al., 1994)

t+1
 Presentation of the LandSoil model

© UMR LISAH

Outputs
Events

Soil thickness (t1)
Topographical area (t1)

Viticulture and Wine

Baseline events
(Rainfall and tillage)

63

Interdisciplinary programmes to address challenges in the viticulture and wine sector

Weed cover and soil fertility management in
vineyard systems
UMR SYSTEM is involved in the European EraNet FertilCrop project*
(2015-2017) which aims to assess and enhance soil fertility for
different European cropping systems.
The first research focus concerns the analysis of weed dynamics in
vineyard plots in response to soil maintenance strategies (tillage or
sown grass cover) and the impacts on interrow fertility. The unit is
thus developing models on soil nitrogen balances in vineyard systems
with weed cover and is identifying soil and plant cover indicators with
the aim of: (1) assessing the level of competition for soil resources
generated by weed cover, and (2) controlling the management of
topsoil in order to enhance control of soil resource availability and
grapevine yields.
The second focus concerns the development of an integrated
approach for assessment and development of soil surface
management strategies in organic viticulture.
Specific attention will be paid to the dynamics of these weed cover
processes in farmers’ plots during the organic farming conversion
period.
Moreover, soil management strategies will be developed to optimize
soil surface management and to better control soil biological
properties and crop growth and yield. Finally ‘soil’ and ‘plant’
indicators will be used in decision-making rules that could be assessed
in research stations and vineyards.
* EraNet (European Research Area Network) FertilCrop (Fertility Building Management
Measures in Organic Cropping Systems) project.

 Soil management combining tillage along the rows and weed
management in the interrows in a Domaine du Chapitre vineyard plot
© Y. Bouisson/UMR SYSTEM

Contact:
Raphaël Métral, raphael.metral@supagro.fr
For further information: www.fertilcrop.net

EvaSprayViti – an artificial vine for agroenvironmental optimization of
vine crop spraying
The current range of sprayers and the majority of new currently
marketed equipment are out of line with agroenvironmental and
societal issues (reduced pesticide inputs, limited environmental risks and
exposure of operators and local residents). The sprayer range is highly
diversified in terms of technologies (pneumatic, airblast, propulsed jet)
and machine configurations (vaulted, side-by-side, aeroconvector, etc.).
In the absence of quantified indicators of the agricultural and
environmental performances of sprayers, it is hard for all stakeholders
in the sector—manufacturers, equipment distributors, agricultural
consultants—to gear the development of sprayers towards more
efficient machines and to propose professionals spraying practices that
reduce pesticide input use. However, there are existing technological
solutions that enable a significant reduction in pesticide use while
preserving the environment. They deserve to be promoted to
professionals, but technological assessment methods would be
necessary.
Research carried out in the framework of UMT EcoTechViti (20112013) has led to the development of a new tool for characterizing the
agricultural and environmental performances of sprayers. The so-called
EvaSprayViti tool is an adjustable artificial vine that enables objective and replicable measurements of the spraying quality, with testing under
controlled conditions of the performances of different spraying equipment and practices. This test bench reproduces four 10-m long vine
rows. Three different bench configurations correspond to three vine development stages (beginning, middle and full vegetation), so sprayers
and spraying practices can thus be tested according to the vine vegetation pattern.
 Testing a side-by-side sprayer on an EvaSprayViti test bench

Viticulture and Wine

© IFV/IRSTEA

64

Initial results have confirmed that spraying optimization and precision spraying are key ways to reduce pesticide use. They also raise the
question as to the harmonization of ways of expressing spray dosages in Europe. In France, for instance, dosages are expressed per cadastral
hectare, whereas in other European countries they differ according to the vine vegetative development stage.
Contacts:
Sébastien Codis, sebastien.codis@vignevin.com
Bernadette Ruelle, bernadette.ruelle@irstea.fr
For further information: see the video presenting the tool on: www.youtube.com

Diversification
of grapevine products
Development of a specific grape juice sector
The experimental FIJUS-R@ISOL research programme* (2008-2015)
was aimed at developing a range of pure grape juices with improved
nutritional value and setting up a specific grape juice sector. This
involves answering questions and defining specifications necessary
for the adaptation of such a sector using grapevine varieties devoted
solely to grape juice production (not wine). Cropping methods
and process have thus been revised from a reverse engineering
standpoint, i.e. from the bottle to the plot.
The study—scientifically coordinated by INRA Pech Rouge—led
to the selection of 14 new grape juice specific varieties from 448
genotypes and according to the industrial interest. Ten of these
varieties, nine hybrids and a Vitis vinifera variety will be registered
in the viticulture catalogue in late 2016. The next step is to boost
the production potential to over a million hectolitres, to reduce the
sugar/acid ratio to close to that of apple juice. The specifications
have thus been defined on the basis of the following criteria:
 high yield (over 150 hl/ha for red grape varieties and, if possible,
250-300 hl/ha for high yielding white grape varieties)
 low sugar content (around 120 g/l)
 acidity of over 7 g/l (equivalent to sulfuric acid), pH in the 2.83.2 range
 high polyphenol content for red grape juice (total polyphenol
indices of over 3 g/l)
 aromatic
 good or quite good fungal disease resistance
 good agricultural performance.

The selected varieties will also meet, in a more environment-friendly
way, organic agriculture requirements. Three other INRA-bred
varieties are still being studied for their fungal disease resistance.
They have nevertheless been preselected because of their excellent
quality levels, including aromatic qualities.
The project involved many public and private sector partners**,
while being co-accredited by the Qualiméditerranée and Vitagora
competitive clusters.
* Funding: FUI, BPI France, France AgriMer, Conseil régional Languedoc-Roussillon
** Project led by the company Foulon-Sopagly, Europe’s leading grape juice producer.
The partners are INRA (UEPR, Domaine de Vassal, UMR SPO, UMR AGAP), IFV ENTAV,
UMT Géno-Vigne, ICV, wine cellars SAS Roquecourbe,
SCA Vignoble de la voie Héraclès, Institut de santé STIC Dijon.

Contacts:
Hernàn Ojeda, hernan.ojeda@supagro.inra.fr
Jean-Louis Escudier, escudier@supagro.inra.fr

u Preparation of
grape juice samples
(2014 vintage) for
colour analysis
© M.Veyret/INRA Pech
Rouge

Plastic materials and most medicines are currently produced by the
petrochemical industry, i.e. made from petroleum-based chemical
compounds. In one century, however, the extraction and use of
petroleum as a main energy source has led to almost total depletion
of the reserves that had formed over millions of years. Finding ways
to produce energy and chemical compounds based on renewable
resources such as plants or (more generally) biomass, is a key
challenge. The use of wastes as raw materials is part of the circular
economy concept that our society is striving to adopt.
In the wine sector, the biorefinery principle is not really new, as
illustrated by distilleries in charge of ‘eliminating’ wine by-products.
In addition to alcohol production, distilleries have innovated and
diversified products derived from marc development. Polyphenols
are very widespread in the plant kingdom. From a chemical
standpoint, they are close to phenol and petrochemical-based
derivatives which are used massively in the industry for specialty
chemicals or for the synthesis of plastic materials. Substitutions are
therefore possible.
Studies carried out by UMR SPO in collaboration with other
Montpellier-based teams (Institut Charles Gerhardt and UMR
Agropolymer Engineering and Emerging Technologies) have begun

substituting bisphenol A in epoxy
resin synthesis. After 6 years of
research, three patents have been
deposited concerning the use of
organic sources of polyphenols
to produce platform molecules
that could be functionalized
for specialty chemicals or used
as building blocks for making
polymers and resins. Polyphenols
 Epoxy resins produced with
seed-extracted tannins from
are not targeted and any waste
marc
or biomass materials with a high
The colour is associated with the degree of
polyphenol content could be used epoxy prepolymer purification.
in this process. The diverse range
© É. Dubreucq/UMR IATE
of natural structures have the
advantage of conferring properties
that are flexible and sometimes specific.
Contact:
Hélène Fulcrand, helene.fulcrand@supagro.inra.fr
For further information: www6.montpellier.inra.fr/spo_eng/Research/
SPIRAL/Phenolic-compounds-in-plant-processed-products

Viticulture and Wine

Materials developed with tannins – a new market
for the wine industry?

65

66

© F. Pruneau

Viticulture and Wine

Partnerships and innovations
to support businesses

Locally, the research teams are mainly involved with
companies of the Qualiméditerranée competitive cluster*
and the Vinseo cluster**.
The partnerships often lead to innovation transfers
which strengthen the competitiveness of the partner
businesses. The teams are also involved in joint projects
with chambers of agriculture, unions and interprofessional
organizations. This investment with local stakeholders
facilitates meeting their expectations, incorporating
their practical knowledge, while better anticipating the
challenges of the sector. The Languedoc wine region has a
highly diverse range of wines, terroirs and projects, so the
results are transferable to other wine regions.

Institutional partnership
services
National Institute
for Agricultural Research
(INRA/Montpellier SupAgro)
Contact: Gaspard Lépine, agrovalo@supagro.inra.fr
www.montpellier.inra.fr/Partenariats/AgrovaloMediterranee-valorisation-et-transfert
www.supagro.fr/web/pages/?idl=19&page=516
Université de Montpellier
(UM)
Contact: Gaëtan Lan Sun Luk,
iris-accueil@univ-montp2.fr
www.umontpellier.fr/universite/directions/directionde-linnovation-et-des-partenariats/
National Research Institute of Science
and Technology for Environment and
Agriculture
(IRSTEA)
Contact: Christophe Guizard,
christophe.guizard@irstea.fr
www.irstea.fr
French Institute for Vine and Wine
(IFV)
Contact: Éric Serrano, ifvservices@vignevin.com
www.vignevin.com/ifv-services/presentation-difvservices.html

Nationally, the scientific platform is integrated in national
innovation strategies coordinated by INRA, IFV and
IRSTEA. This enhances the distribution of work between
geographical centres and setting up of trials on various
technologies under different geographical and production
conditions. The platform—because of the diversity of
wine estates in the region and the Mediterranean climatic
conditions—is a forerunner in climate change adaptation
research.
Internationally, exchanges with other global public and
private viticulture and wine research leaders enable the
transfer of data, practices, staff and material, especially
plants, to enhance local scientific research. The marked
presence of Agropolis International member teams in
OIV commissions and expert groups substantiates the
relevance of their scientific position on the international
stage.
The scope of the viticulture- and wine-oriented scientific
platform and the excellent partnerships established have
given rise to major innovation themes, through:
 the definition of ideotypes, which has led to the
breeding of varieties that combine disease resistance
and compliance with typicity
 the development of tools to control water supplies, or
the use of new sources such as treated water
 the design and development of vineyard and winemaking
equipment using tools that facilitate tasks ranging from
defining concepts to their validation on a real scale in
wine estates
 the development of wine yeasts that meet professional
winemakers’ demand via innovative selection methods
 the use of new extraction methods to make effective
use of coproducts or to create new inputs
 the support for strategic development of the sector
through co-construction, prospective or corporate
social responsibility approaches, but also via projects
focused more on corporate strategies (feasibility studies,
marketing geared towards new consumer targets, etc.)
 the transition to precision viticulture by making effective
use of the many possibilities offered by the digital
revolution: development of tools (probes, decisionsupport tools, etc.), provision of heterogeneous
and multi-source data integration methods, use of
spatiotemporal data and the development of methods
for the analysis of high volumes of data collected in
vineyards, wineries and distribution channels.

Viticulture and Wine

A

gropolis International member research
teams working on viticulture and wine have
close partnership relationships with other
public research teams, and with economic
stakeholders. This platform functions on local, national and
international levels.

67

Partnerships and innovations to support businesses
These innovations can be combined to come up with
solutions to major socioeconomic issues, such as
adaptation to climate change, development of sustainable
viticulture or the quest for new opportunities.
To accelerate such transfers, all institutions of the
Agropolis scientific community have a partnership
service (see below). The aim of these services is to
facilitate business access to research laboratories and
they fulfil three main tasks: (1) negotiation, appraisal
and management of partnership research contracts, (2)
the development of service provision, and (3) company
transfer of results to wine estates. Some teams have also
developed a business start-up support service.
Partnership research contracts with other public or
private institutions require joint preliminary definition
of the objectives and methods necessary to obtain
solutions to specific problems. The results can lead
to various deliverables: patents, software, databases,
varieties, secret know-how, dissemination of methods,
etc. In addition, Montpellier SupAgro and INRA have
set up an incubator to host project leaders and support
them via the SYNERSUD network***. In 2015, seven
projects on viticulture and wine were hosted by this
incubator. IRSTEA also has an incubation site that can host
businesses monitored by the regional incubator
—Languedoc Roussillon Incubation (LRI)****.

q A presentation on recent research advances and
potential applications of results at the Journées
scientifiques de la vigne et du vin—a yearly seminar for
stakeholders in the viticulture and wine sector

VViticulture and Wine

© G. Bouteillier

68

Alongside the research, most experimental and technical
platforms managed by research teams offer businesses
and public organizations services based on completely
controlled protocols (mini-vinification, fine chemical
analysis of polyphenols, aromas, etc., standardized sensory
analyses, ICT assessments, etc.). These services usually
help to check specific aspects of processes (e.g. does
a yeast enable high quality vinification?) or to measure
a new data result, e.g. the quantity of polyphenols in a
product, etc. They can also raise new research issues and
open novel innovation perspectives.
* Competitive cluster devoted to sustainable agrotechnologies, www.
qualimediterranee.fr
** Network of suppliers of the South of France wine sector: www.vinseo.com
*** Languedoc-Roussillon-based network devoted to supporting and creating
innovative businesses: www.synersud.com
**** www.lr-incubation.com/en_presentation.php

 Signature of a partnership agreement with Vinseo—a network of wine
sector suppliers
© Service Communication - Montpellier SupAgro

u The main French and foreign partners with
which the Agropolis International scientific
community published at least four documents
between 2008 and 2014
(network diagram designed using Gephi
with WoSTM Thomson Reuters data).
© D. Fournier/INRA

Strategic foresight – what viticulture and wines for tomorrow?
Can we predict the future? Certainly not! But can we foresee or
contribute to its construction? Strategic foresight was introduced
in the viticulture and wine sphere via an initiative of the École
d’Agronomie de Montpellier in 1998 with the aim of assessing the
major changes under way in the sector—technical, economic and
social—and foreseeing the impacts, especially for research and
education. A national foresight study was then carried out by INRA*
(2003). Since then, FranceAgriMer has created a unit devoted to
strategic foresight and a partnership was established which regularly
associates its foresight experts with those of Montpellier for studies
focused on the viticulture and wine sector.
Since 2004, these foresight research specialists have regularly called
upon experts from the Montpellier platform to meet requests
from various professional organizations (unions, interprofessional
organizations, etc.), businesses (consortium of input suppliers,
cooperatives, multinational corporations, etc.) and public authorities.
In 2011 and 2012, a study led by Montpellier SupAgro/IHEV and
INRA, at the request of the Regional Directorate for Agriculture,
Agrifood and Forests (DRAAF) in Languedoc-Roussillon
(FranceAgriMer funding), resulted in the building of regional
scenarios on the future of viticulture in Languedoc region for 2025,
in relation to territorial patterns (demographic, water supplies, etc.),
while bringing together professional stakeholders in a pluralistic
viticulture setting (see below).

Finally, as foresight research is interdisciplinary, the methods are
commonly used to facilitate and provide resources to promote
transdisciplinarity between workshops in large-scale research
projects, such as the 2005-2008 ANR project ‘Low-alcohol quality
wines’ and, since 2013, the LACCAVE climate change project.
*Study headed by Michel Sebillotte and coordinated by Patrick Aigrain (FranceAgriMer), Hervé
Hannin (Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV) and Clementina Sebillotte (INRA).

Overview of four viticulture scenarios
in Languedoc-Roussillon region for 2025

u

v

PLURALISTIC SECTOR

LANDSCAPE SECTOR

Ú Pluralistic viticulture organized
Ú ‘Together we stand’
Ú Area: 230 000 ha
Ú Volume produced: 13-15 million hl

w
DECLINING SECTOR
Ú Soulless organization without projects
Ú ‘Missed opportunities’
Ú Area: 150 000 ha
Ú Volume produced: 7-9 million hl

Ú Oenotorium
Ú ‘Those who stay make a decent living’
Ú Area: 180 000 ha
ÚVolume produced: 10-12 million hl

x
LIBERAL SECTOR
Ú Selective industrial development
Ú ‘Everyone for themselves — some succeed’
Ú Area: 180 000 ha
Ú Volume produced: 10-12 million hl

‘Scoping future opportunities and controlling our destiny through strategic
foresight’. This could characterize the approach of the Vignerons de Buzet
cooperative which has opted to build its strategy on the basis of an in-depth
foresight study carried out by Montpellier SupAgro/IHEV in which all of its
executive and administrative senior staff were involved over a 3-year period.
This was followed by a strategic foresight initiative and drawing up of a
strategic action plan (2011), which has since then given rise to periodic gap
analysis seminars. This approach is fully in line with the cooperative’s early,
shared, exemplary and unfailing commitment to sustainable development.
For further information: www.vigneronsbuzet-durable.fr/en

 Strategic foresight meeting at Montpellier SupAgro/
IHEV for the Vignerons de Buzet cooperative, with the
managing director Pierre Philippe, and the presidents
Serge Lherisson and Vincent Leyre © Vignerons de Buzet

Viticulture and Wine

Strategic foresight of Buzet winemakers

69

 Entrance to the Faculty of Pharmacy
at the Université de Montpellier © UM

 Teacher and students during a
physicochemical analysis workshop

Viticulture
Vigne et vinand Wine

© Montpellier SupAgro

70

 Montpellier SupAgro Campus,
esplanade in front of the main entrance
© M. Calleja/Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV

Training offered by Agropolis
International member institutions
in the viticulture and wine field

Level

Degree

Title

Institution

Agricultural engineering
Specialization ‘Viticulture-oenology’

Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV

DNŒ

National Oenology Diploma

Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV

DNŒ

National Oenology Diploma

UM

Agronomy and agrifood science
Specialization ‘Viticulture, oenology, economics and vinivinicultural
management’
Emphasis ‘Viticulture and wine’

Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV
Bordeaux Sciences Agro

Vinifera EuroMaster
International Master in Vine and Wine Sciences
Erasmus Mundus + In partnership with seven European universities

Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV
consortium européen EMaVE

Master 2
(MSc)

Distinction ‘Marketing and sales’
Emphasis ‘Wine marketing’

UM et Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV

DES / OIV-MSc

Secondary school diploma (DES) in viticulture and wine
management
OIV Master of science in wine management

Montpellier SupAgro and OIV

Master Grande École
(Business school
MSc)

Specialization ‘Trade and Sales’
International Wine Marketing Certificate

Montpellier Business School

Licence
(BSc)

Chemistry
Emphasis ‘Preparation of the National Oenology Diploma’

UM

Legal activities
Specialization ‘Law and management of the vitiviniculture sector’

UPVD at Narbonne

Management of quality systems for the vitiviniculture sector

Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV, EPLEFPA Orange,
Aix-Marseille Université

Sales manager for wine and distribution networks

EPLEFPA Montpellier-Orb-Hérault,
Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV, UM

Wine tourism and cultural project

Université de Nîmes
Lycée agricole de Nîmes Rodilhan

Integrated viticulture and environmental certification

Montpellier SupAgro, UPVM3
CFPPA Bordeaux, CFPPA Beaune

Bac + 5

Bac + 2

The table below outlines the
training-education courses
related to the viticulture and
wine domain. It specifies the
diploma levels, a description of
the training and the institutions
where the training is provided.

Ingénieur
(Engineering degree)

Master
(MSc)

Bac + 3

The training-education
programme includes more
than 80 diploma courses (from
Bac +2 to Bac +8: technician,
engineering degree, Master’s,
PhD), as well as vocational
training modules (existing or
developed upon request).

Licence professionnelle
(BSc with
professional scope)

BTS
(Advanced
vocational training
certificate)

Sales representative ‘Drinks, wine, spirits’
Viticulture-Oenology

Lycée Frédéric Bazille-Agropolis Montpellier

Viticulture and Wine

U

niversities and
engineering schools
(as well as vocational
training institutions)
that are Agropolis International
members propose a complete
training-education programme.

71

Training offered by Agropolis International member institutions in the viticulture and wine field

Agricultural engineering
degree, specialization
‘viticulture-oenology’,
MSc ‘viticulture-wine’
and National Oenology
Diploma (DNŒ)
Agricultural engineering degree,
specialization ‘viticulture and
oenology’, historical training in the

field of viticulture and wine at the Bac + 5
level, this programme meets the national
and international demand for high level
scientific and technical staff to support the
modernization of the viticulture and wine
sector in many wine-growing countries.
Graduates have multidisciplinary scientific
and technical knowledge enabling them to
adapt to changes in global markets and in
the global vitiviniculture sector.

p DNΠstudents during a sensorial
analysis session
© Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV

National MSc in viticulture and
wine an MSc programme in the science

and technology field, distinction ‘agriculture
and agrifood science’ (3A), specialization
‘viticulture, oenology, economics and
vitiviniculture management’), is jointly
organized by Montpellier SupAgro and
Bordeaux Sciences Agro. Graduates are
prepared for implementing viticulture and
oenology techniques, defining production
strategies and crop management
interventions in relation to marketing, while
conducting experimental research projects
to address sectoral development needs
worldwide.This training (offered in French)
is for foreign students and vocational
training students, or candidates with a BSc
degree, or equivalent, in scientific disciplines.

National Oenology Diploma
(DNŒ)

Viticulture and Wine

This European Higher Education Area
oenology training programme, at the MSc
(Bac +5) level, is recognized by OIV.

72

Graduate oenologists must have sufficient
technical, legal and economic knowledge
for winemaking in accordance with
composition and quality standards. This
knowledge ensures that graduates are wine
experts and guarantors of winemaking
and control procedures. They have a role
in preserving consumers’ health and the
quality of the environment.

The National Oenology Diploma (DNŒ)
is awarded by Montpellier SupAgro
within the framework of the curriculum
at IHEV and the Université de Montpellier
(UM) through its Faculty of Pharmacy.
The admission and course organization
conditions differ at IHEV and UM.
At Montpellier SupAgro, students
generally follow the DNΠprogramme in
parallel with the agricultural engineering
curriculum, specialization ‘viticultureoenology’, or the MSc ‘viticulture-wine’
curriculum, and they thus obtain a joint
degree.
At UM, the DNΠprogramme is organized
by the Centre de formation et de recherche
œnologie (CFROE) within the UM Faculty of
Pharmacy. This Centre is also supported by
the Fondation de l’Université de Montpellier
via the OENOFUTUR research and
education chair. Several activities are
organized, including conferences for
students and professional operators in
the sector. This training addresses all
aspects of grape cropping (viticulture)
and winemaking (oenology) occupations,
including economic, marketing and
legislative aspects. It is geared towards
young BSc (or equivalent) graduates
in scientific disciplines and vocational
training staff. The courses are provided by
both teachers-researchers and external
professional specialists in these fields.

The programme, coordinated by
Montpellier SupAgro through IHEV,
includes a first year (M1) in France, in
Montpellier for 8 months and in Bordeaux
for 1 month, with all courses offered in
English. In the second year (M2), students
attend the course in European universities
that are members of the EMaVE
consortium, with their final end-of-course
project conducted in one of the partner
universities, especially in the Southern
Hemisphere.
Since its launch, this training programme
has continued to innovate on an
educational level, especially with the
creation of two new e-learning modules,
‘Research Project’ and ‘Professional
Immersion’, thus enhancing the balance
with the number of classroom courses.
A MOOC* is in preparation as an online
refresher for certain students.
So far, 200 Vinifera EuroMaster graduates
are working worldwide, with careers in
different viticulture and wine sectors,
in companies—import-export or as
winemakers in prestigious wine estates—in
professional organizations, in teaching or
research (postdoctoral). Every year, about
30 students, from nearly 20 nationalities,
participate in this innovative and efficient
training programme.
*MOOC = massive open online course

Other MSc programmes
related to the viticulture
and wine theme
Vinifera EuroMaster

Vinifera EuroMaster is an international
Master’s programme in vine and wine
sciences that is jointly offered by
partners of the EMaVE consortium,
whose founding members are
Montpellier SupAgro and Bordeaux
Sciences Agro (France) and agriculture
universities of Madrid (Spain), Lisbon
(Portugal), Turin (Italy), Udine (Italy)
and Geisenheim (Germany).
This course—created in 2006
and supported by the Erasmus
Mundus label since 2008 and the
UNESCO Chair Cultures et Tradition
du Vin since 2011—trains
high level international staff to obtain
multidisciplinary expertise that they
can use to support the development
and modernization of the vine and
wine sector worldwide.
Applicants must have an international
profile, speak three languages and
have obtained a BSc degree in biology
or agricultural science and technology.
Only around 30 students a year are
admitted to this programme out of
some 300 applicants!

p First day of classes for the ninth contingent of the
Vinifera EuroMaster programme © Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV

p DNŒ programme at the Université de
Montpellier-Faculté de Pharmacie-First day of
classes 2015 © C. Saucier

OIV MSc in wine management is a Master’s
(Bac+5) degree that was created in 1986 at
the initiative of OIV. This MSc programme,
jointly offered by Montpellier SupAgro
and OIV, is organized by the Association
Universitaire Internationale du Vin. It prepares
students on managerial decision making in
the viticulture and wine sector (marketing,
management, economics, law, human
resources, communication). Students are
registered at Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV and
receive a specialized studies degree (MSc
level; Bac+5). The training (in English and
French) lasts 16 months in 22 countries. It
is organized in 28 modules, with each being
devoted to a specific topic and a studied
and visited host region (transnational
experiential education). For each module, a
university or professional centre serves as
the organizer. This multidisciplinary mobile
training gives future decision makers a
complete overview and immersion in the
global wine sector.
This Master’s programme is unique in
that it favours studies requiring a high
level of commitment and autonomy from
participants. Another unique feature is
that students discover situations regarding
markets and sectoral stakeholders directly
in their international setting on five
continents, and the programme is officially
recognized by OIV.
The training involves a balanced alternation
of case studies of companies, meetings with
professional operators (over 500 a year) and
classroom teaching. The teachers include
university professors and researchers
specialized in the sector, and also

professional business representatives with
recognized experience in their field—sales
managers, marketing specialists, producers,
legal experts, etc. Twenty-six classes have
already been trained, representing a solidary
network of over 450 graduates from around
40 nationalities.
The programme is suitable for anyone
who has successfully completed 4 years
of university studies and is motivated by a
professional project specifically oriented
towards viticulture and wine occupations.
A good command of French and English is
essential.

Master’s 2 ‘Wine marketing’

p Grape picking in an experimental vineyard during
the MSc2 ‘Wine marketing’ integration session
© Montpellier SupAgro-IHEV

The Master’s 2 ‘Wine marketing’ training
programme is jointly coordinated by UM
and Montpellier SupAgro.The aim is to
train commercial staff specialized in the
vitiviniculture sector, with a high level of
commercial marketing, negotiation and
management based expertise.
This Master’s programme has a clear
‘professionalization’ focus as students can
attend training classes under a professional
or apprenticeship contract.The international
scope is reflected by the proportion of
classes offered in English, training courses
abroad and the involvement of international
students.The courses are given by teachersresearchers from UM and Montpellier
SupAgro, as well as by external professional
specialists recognized in the viticulture and
wine field.This MSc programme is supported
by a network of businesses, institutions
and professional organizations that foster
professional integration.

CONTACTS
Agricultural engineering degree, specialization viticulture–oenology
(Montpellier SupAgro - IHEV)
Contact: Michel Calleja, michel.calleja@supagro.fr
www.supagro.fr/web/ihev
National Oenology Diploma
(Montpellier SupAgro - IHEV)
Contact: Michel Calleja, michel.calleja@supagro.fr
www.supagro.fr/web/ihev
National Oenology Diploma
(UM)
Contact: Cédric Saucier, cedric.saucier@umontpellier.fr
http://oenologie.edu.umontpellier.fr
MSc viticulture, oenology, economics and vitivinicultural management
(Montpellier SupAgro - IHEV)
Contact: Michel Calleja, michel.calleja@supagro.fr
www.supagro.fr/web/ihev
Vinifera Euromaster
(EMaVE Consortium)
Contact: Patrice Lallemand, patrice.lallemand@supagro.fr
http://www.supagro.fr/web/ihev
MSc2 ‘Wine marketing’
(Montpellier SupAgro - IHEV, UM - Montpellier Management)
Contacts: Michel Calleja, michel.calleja@supagro.fr
Isabelle Bories-Azeau, isabelle.bories-azeau@univ-montp1.fr
www.supagro.fr/web/ihev
OIV Master of science in wine management
(Montpellier SupAgro, OIV)
Contacts: Michel Calleja, michel.calleja@supagro.fr
Nicolas Goldschmidt, ngoldschmidt@oivmsc.org
www.supagro.fr/web/ihev
Business School MSc
(Montpellier Business School)
Contact: Audrey Arlabosse, a.arlabosse@montpellier-bs.com
www.montpellier-bs.com

p An on-campus contingent of students of the OIV
MSc in wine management programme with J.M.
Aurand, D.G. of OIV, A.-L. Wack, D.G. of Montpellier
SupAgro and the AUIV managers
© Montpellier SupAgro

Recruitment is aimed at young graduates
who have obtained a Master’s 1 degree
in economics, management, linguistics
or agricultural science, or who have an
equivalent degree from a foreign university.

Chemistry BSc – Emphasis ‘Preparation of the National Oenology Diploma’
(UM)
Contact: Francoise Morato Lallemand, francoise.morato-lallemand@univ-montp2.fr
www.umontpellier.fr
BSc with professional scope – Legal activities – Specialization ‘Law and
management of the vitiviniculture sector’
(UPVD – Narbonne)
Contact: Marc Gomy, gomy@univ-perp.fr
www.univ-perp.fr
BSc with professional scope – Management of quality systems for the
vitiviniculture sector
(Montpellier SupAgro - IHEV, EPLEFPA Orange, Aix-Marseille Université)
Contact: Michel Calleja, michel.calleja@supagro.fr
www.supagro.fr/web/ihev
BSc with professional scope – Sales manager for wine and distribution
networks
(Montpellier SupAgro - IHEV, EPLEFPA Montpellier-Orb-Hérault, UM - Montpellier Management)
Contact: Michel Calleja, michel.calleja@supagro.fr
www.supagro.fr/web/ihev/
BSc with professional scope – Integrated viticulture and environmental
certification
(Montpellier SupAgro, UPVM3, CFPPA Bordeaux, CFPPA Beaune)
Contact: Romain Bonafos, romain.bonafos@supagro.fr
www.supagro.fr
BSc with professional scope – Wine tourism and cultural project
(Université de Nîmes, Lycée agricole de Nîmes Rodilhan)
Contact: Brigitte Auziol, brigitte.auziol@unimes.fr
www.unimes.fr
Advanced vocational training certificate (BTS) Sales representative
‘Drinks, wine, spirits’
(Lycée Frédéric Bazille - Agropolis Montpellier)
Contact: legta.montpellier@educagri.fr
www.epl.agropolis.fr
Viticulture-Oenology (BTS)
(Lycée Frédéric Bazille - Agropolis Montpellier)
Contact: legta.montpellier@educagri.fr
www.epl.agropolis.fr

Viticulture and Wine

OIV MSc in wine management

73

List of acronyms
and abbreviations
ADEME
ANR
ANSES
AOC
CASDAR
CIHEAM
CIRAD
CNRS
CSR
DNŒ
DAAV
EPHE
ERDF
FADN
FNEGE
FP7
FUI
GI
IAMM
ICT
IFV
IHEV
INSERM
INRA
INTA
IRD
IRSTEA
LRI
ME
MSc
OIV
OMERE
ONEMA

Viticulture and Wine

OSU-OREME

74

PET
PFP
PGI
R&D
SME
UE
UM
UMR
UMT
VSE
UR
WGI

French Environment and Energy Management Agency /
Agence de l'environnement et de la maîtrise de l'énergie
French National Research Agency / Agence nationale de la recherche
French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety /
Agence nationale de sécurité sanitaire de l'alimentation, de l'environnement et du travail
Registered appellation of origin / Appellation d’origine contrôlée
Compte d'affectation spéciale développement agricole et rural (France)
International Centre for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies – Montpellier
Agricultural Research for Development / Centre de coopération internationale en recherche
agronomique pour le développement (France)
National Center for Scientific Research / Centre national de la recherche scientifique (France)
Corporate social responsibility
Diversity, Adaptation and Breeding of Grapevine research team of UMR AGAP
National Oenology Diploma / Diplôme National d'Œnologue
École pratique des hautes études (France)
European Regional Development Fund
Farm Accountancy Data Network
French Foundation for Management Education /
Fondation Nationale pour l'Enseignement de la Gestion des Entreprises
7th Framework Programme of the European Union
Single Interministerial Fund / Fonds unique interministériel (France)
Geographical indication
Mediterranean Agronomic Institute / Centre International de Hautes Etudes Agronomiques
Méditerranéennes – Institut Agronomique Méditerranéen de Montpellier (France)
Information and communication technology
French Institute for Vine and Wine / Institut Français de la Vigne et du Vin
Institute for Higher Education in Vine and Wine Sciences /
Institut des hautes études de la vigne et du vin (France)
French Institute of Health and Medical Research /
Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale
National Institute for Agricultural Research / Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (France)
Institute of Agricultural Technology / Instituto Nacional de Tecnología Agropecuaria (Argentina)
French Research Institute for Development / Institut de recherche pour le développement
National Research Institute of Science and Technology for Environment and Agriculture / Institut
national de recherche en sciences et technologies pour l'environnement et l’agriculture (France)
Languedoc Roussillon Incubation (France)
Medium-sized enterprise / Entreprise de taille intermédiaire
Master of Science
International Organisation of Vine and Wine
Observatoire Méditerranéen de l'Environnement Rural et de l'Eau (France)
French National Agency for Water and Aquatic Environments /
Office national de l'eau et des milieux aquatiques
Observatory for Science of the Universe – Observatory for Research on the Mediterranean
Environment / Observatoire des Sciences de l’Univers – Observatoire de recherche méditerranéen de
l'environnement
Polyethylene terephthalate
Polyphenol platform / Plateforme Polyphénols
Protected geographical indication
Research and development
Small and medium-sized enterprises
Experimental unit / Unité expérimentale
Université de Montpellier (France)
Joint research unit / Unité mixte de recherche
Joint technology unit / Unité mixte technologique
Very small enterprise
Research unit / Unité de recherche
Without geographical indication

This document was published with the support of Agropolis
Fondation (Investissements d’Avenir programme) - Labex Agro
(ANR-10-LABX-001-01), Occitanie / Pyrénées-Méditerranée
Region, the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF),
Montpellier SupAgro and INRA.

Pantone
377C

Member organizations and partners of
Agropolis International involved in this Dossier
CIHEAM-IAMM
CIRAD
CNRS
EPHE
IFV
INRA
INSERM
IRD
IRSTEA
Montpellier Business School
Montpellier SupAgro
UM
UNîmes
UPVD
UPVM3

IN

Pantone
377C

INRA 2012

Director in Chief: Bernard Hubert

Coordination: Chantal Dorthe (INRA)
Scientific Writing and Editing: Isabelle Amsallem
(Agropolis Productions)
Agropolis International Correspondant:
Mélanie Broin
Communication: Nathalie Villeméjeanne
Layout and Computer Graphics:
Frédéric Pruneau Production
Original Document Design:
Agropolis Productions
Translation:
David Manley
Participated in this issue: Clément Arnal, Laurent Audeguin,
Jean-Marc Barbier, Catherine Bisbal, Bruno Blondin, Laurent Bouby,
Jean-Michel Boursiquot, Franck Celhay, Brigitte Charnomordic,
Foued Cheriet, Véronique Cheynier, Christophe Clipet,
Sébastien Codis, Guillaume Coulouma, Sylvie Dequin, Agnès Doligez,
Martial Douin, Jean-Louis Escudier, Flor Etchebarne, Timothée Flutre,
Stéphane Follain, Bénédicte Fontez, Dominique Fournier,
Hélène Fulcrand, Isabelle Gaillard, Christian Gary, Alexia Gobrecht,
Brigitte Goral, Julien Granata, Olivier Grunberger, Rémi GuerinSchneider, Hervé Hannin, Nadine Hilgert, Eirios Hugo,
Frédéric Jacob, Serge Kreiter, Thierry Lacombe, Philippe Lagacherie,
Lucette Laurens, Éric Lebon, Loïc Le Cunff, Gaspard Lepine,
Cécile Marchal, Aurélie Metay, Raphaël Métral, Maryline Meyer,
Jérôme Molénat, Etienne Montaigne, Laetitia Mouls,
Jean-Roch Mouret, Olivier Naud, Pascal Neveu, Hernán Ojeda,
Lionel Palancade, Nadine Paris, Jean-Pierre Péros, Léo Pichon,
Isabelle Piot-Lepetit, Céline Poncet-Legrand, Laurent Prévot,
Damien Raclot, Sabine Ragusi, Charles Romieu, Vincent de Rudnicki,
Bernadette Ruelle, Jean-Marie Sablayrolles, Louis-Antoine Saïsset,
Jean-Michel Salmon, Alain Samson, Cédric Saucier,
Christophe Sereno, Thierry Simonneau, Nathalie Smits, Ariane Sultan,
Jean-Frédéric Terral, Nancy Terrier, Marie Stéphane Texier,
Patrice This, Anne Tireau, Bruno Tisseyre, Marie-Stéphane Tixier,
Laurent Torregrosa, Michel Torrijos, Jean-Marc Touzard, Aude Vernhet,
Philippe Vismara, Marc Voltz, Frédéric Vrinat, Ghais Zriki.
Illustrations:
we thank all contributors to this Dossier, as well as Guillaume Besqueut,
Yvan Bouisson, Michel Calleja, Chantal Dorthe,
Marie-Agnès Ducasse, Olivier Huttel, Andrew Kerr, Christophe Maître,
Souhir Marsit, Sébastien Payen, Sabine Ragusi, Christian Slagmulder,
Nicolas Sommerer, Frédéric Véran, Clotilde Verriès,
Nathalie Villeméjeanne.
Special Mention: Philippe Psaïla, photographer.
Printing: JF Impression (Montpellier, France)
ISSN : 1628-4259 • Copyright: September 2016
Also available in French

July 2010
August 2011
68 pages (2nd edition, 2012) 84 pages
English / French
English / French

March 2012
72 pages
English / French /
Spanish

October 2012
48 pages
English / French

February 2013
48 pages
English / French /
Spanish

December 2013
72 pages
English / French

February 2014
64 pages
English / French /
Spanish

October 2013
76 pages
French

Dossiers d’Agropolis International
The Dossiers d’Agropolis International series is a deliverable of
Agropolis International that is produced within the scope of its
mission to promote expertise of the scientific community.

February 2015
88 pages
English / French

Each Dossier is devoted to a broad scientific theme, and includes
a clear overview that is a ready reference for all laboratories and
teams associated with Agropolis International that are conducting
research on the target theme.
This series is meant to boost the awareness of our different
partners on the expertise and potential available within our scientific
community, but also to facilitate contacts for the development of
scientific and technical cooperation and exchange.
For further information:
www.agropolis.org/publications/thematic-files-agropolis.php

Viticulture and Wine

Monitoring Committee: Brigitte Charnomordic (INRA),
Rémi Guérin-Schneider (IFV), Gaspard Lépine (INRA), Raphaël
Métral (INRA), Jérôme Molénat (INRA),
Jean-Michel Salmon (INRA),
Bruno Tisseyre (Montpellier SupAgro)

Twenty-one dossiers published in the same collection, including:

Scientific Coordination: Bruno Blondin (Montpellier SupAgro),
Hervé Hannin (Montpellier SupAgro),
Thierry Simonneau (INRA), Jean-Marc Touzard (INRA),
Patrice This (INRA).

75

1000 avenue Agropolis
F-34394 Montpellier CEDEX 5
France
Tél. : +33 (0)4 67 04 75 75
Fax : +33 (0)4 67 04 75 99
agropolis@agropolis.fr

www.agropolis.fr

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